Dr John Morris AO MBE remembered at St John's Anglican Church Launceston

Farwell: Melanie Morris reads from 1 Corinthians at Dr John Morris' celebration of life at St John's Anglican Church on Monday. Dr Morris and his wife Judy attended the church for many years. Picture: Phillip Biggs
Farwell: Melanie Morris reads from 1 Corinthians at Dr John Morris' celebration of life at St John's Anglican Church on Monday. Dr Morris and his wife Judy attended the church for many years. Picture: Phillip Biggs

In a service of warmth, humour and thanksgiving, Dr John Morris, AO, MBE, has been farewelled.

At St John’s Anglican Church on Monday, his family, friends and peers gathered to celebrate Dr Morris’ life and achievements, remembering a quiet leader of Launceston’s medical community.

Throughout his long life, he remained himself, natural, and unaffected.

Peter Morris

His sons Peter and Don Morris both gave affectionate eulogies, in which they spoke of their father as a humble, loving man who worked tirelessly, both in his full-time job and in the hours around it, to encourage, develop, and protect the Launceston community.

Some of the offices Dr Morris held included visiting physician at Launceston hospitals for 40 years; president of the Medical Council of Tasmania; twice state chairman of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians; founding chairman of Scotch Oakburn College Council; joint founder of Life Link Samaritans; chairman of the Department of Medicine at Launceston General Hospital; and founding chairman of the Clifford Craig Medical Research Foundation.

“Throughout his long life, he remained himself, natural, and unaffected, open and gentle, direct, ever-humble and modest … unswerving in his desire to try to follow Christ’s teaching,” Peter said.

He spoke of Dr Morris’ early years growing up in a strong Christian community at Sheffield, pursuing science and then medicine at university in Melbourne before returning to Tasmania.

Don emphasised the loving support of Dr Morris’ wife Judy, enabling Dr Morris to continue his work through all hours while providing a welcoming family home.

Health Minister Michael Ferguson, former chief executive of the Clifford Craig Foundation, spoke of Dr Morris’ “passionate search for knowledge” and “commitment to human health, family and happiness”.

“In the last 10 or so years, Dr John directed his considerable energies and intellectual force to the need for better palliative care in Northern Tasmania,” Mr Ferguson said.

“He died knowing that his mission for improved palliative care would be honoured.”

Throughout the service Dr Morris’ deep Christian faith was referenced as his source of strength and humility, and focus on community service without seeking personal acclaim.

Dr Morris died on March 11, aged 90.