Brian Joseph Maher (SPC 1947-53)

February 17, 2021

Brian Maher.

We were notified of the sad passing of Brian Joseph Maher (SPC 1947-53), older brother of Kevin Maher (SPC 1950-1956), uncle of Peter Maher (SPC 1989-1991) and great-uncle of current Year 7 student Oliver Maher.

Brian passed away peacefully on September 23, 2019, at home in Bowral NSW, after a prolonged battle with prostate cancer.

We thank Brian’s brother Kevin, who has compiled the following memories of his younger brother.

Brian spent the whole of his secondary education as a boarder at St Patrick’s College. He gained his matriculation certificate in 1952, before repeating matriculation in 1953 (a practice that was quite commonplace at that time for students considering progression to tertiary level).

Brian Maher during his student days.

In his final year at St Patrick’s, Brian was a prefect, and prominent in all College activities. He was president of the College Conference of the St Vincent de Paul Society, and an executive officer of the Holy Name Society. In 1952, he stroked the winning 5th crew, and was stroke of the second four in 1953. He was an accomplished athlete – a member of the College athletics team for a number of years, captain of the 45-50 strong athletics team, and College athletics champion in 1953. He won the “blue ribbon” 100 yards sprint at the BPS athletics meeting in 1953 and was runner-up in the 220 yards event.

On leaving St Patrick’s, he studied Mining Engineering at Melbourne University, graduating in 1958. He then embarked on a career that initially involved working as a mining engineer in various parts of Australia – Broken Hill (where he met his wife, Pat), Rossarden and Renison Bell in Tasmania, and Cobar (NSW) before managing open cut iron-ore mines in Western Australia (Tom Price and Dampier), and similar open-cut mining operations in Liberia (1987-89) and Guyana (1992-94), before returning to Western Australia as manager of a coal mine at Collie. He retired to Bowral in 1999.

He is survived by Pat and his children Paul, Daniel, Barbara, Elizabeth and Margaret (another daughter, Catherine, predeceased him in 2004).

Brian Maher, pictured in his Matriculation class photograph in 1953.

Brian Maher proudly captained the SPC Athletics Team in 1953, which was named the Champions of the BPS Associated Catholic Colleges that year.