Surf Life Saving Queensland offers our sincere and heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Malcolm (Mal) McNeilly MBE, who sadly passed away overnight following a short and unexpected respiratory issue.
Mal was a stalwart of the surf lifesaving community, joining in 1946 and dedicating more than 70 years of his life to building and supporting the movement.
He was instrumental in helping establish Pacific Surf Life Saving Club back in 1947 and, later, played a key role in the formation of the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter Service in 1976.
While his incredible contribution to the surf lifesaving movement is immeasurable, it’s perhaps best reflected by his standing as a Life Member of Pacific SLSC, Point Danger Branch, Surf Life Saving Queensland, and Surf Life Saving Australia. He was also awarded an MBE for his service to surf lifesaving in 1988.
Mal held a variety of key roles including, but not limited to, Treasurer, Chief Instructor, Secretary, and President of Pacific SLSC. He is the second longest-serving President in Point Danger Branch history, holding the role for 21 years between 1965 to 1986. He also held a number of other key positions including Branch Councillor, Training Officer, District Supervisor, and Patron, amongst others.
SLSQ President Mark Fife OAM paid tribute to Mal, saying his commitment to surf lifesaving was second-to-none.
“Mal was a surf lifesaver to the very core; one of those people who gave his heart and soul to everything he did, both on and off the beach,” he said.
“His leadership and passion were a true asset, and his friendship was valued by all. Importantly, Mal’s legacy will live on through the many lives he saved, changed, and impacted during his seven decades of service.
“Mal will be deeply missed by all those who knew and loved him, and our thoughts are with his family, friends, and clubmates during this time.”