Please stand for the Judge…Happy Birthday Greg
The sea was angry that day my friends. It was the morning of the inaugural 1971 City to Surf, and as part of the fanfare of the day a troupe of ten parachuters overshot their mark and ended up in the drink at The Boot on the northern side of Mackenzies Point. The forecast southerly wind and swell was far more menacing than the weather reports had suggested.
Without a second thought, local lad Greg Maidment, along with a cohort of brave passers-by, cast themselves into the turbulence. Following a 45-minute battle in dangerous surf they managed to remove the harness from the female parachuter and bring her ashore.
Greg and three of his cohort were awarded the NSW Royal Humane Society Bronze Medal Bravery Award. These are not handed out willy nilly.
The actions of Greg Maidment on that fateful day are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the heroics of this well known local character. As we celebrate his milestone birthday this July it is only fair that some of his feats and accomplishments be shared.
Growing up in North Bondi, Greg was a likeable kid who loved fishing, motorcars and collecting snakes and lizards from the nearby quarry. As a young man he figured his brain was his best asset and dived head first into his law books, eventually passing the bar to become a leading industrial barrister. His work took him all over the state and even to the wilds of Papua New Guinea.
During this time, Greg also juggled a family after his very successful courting of Lynette Lynch from Bondi, who he had met at one of the legendary Bronte Surf Club dance nights. The young couple were delighted at the birth of their son, Mark, and subsequently moved into their new home at St Thomas Street, Bronte. To this day, Greg is as proud as punch of his family, and they are certainly proud of him
As a mentor and friend to many, Greg’s advice and role as a reference writer and legal advisor to Mark and his friends while they were experiencing a ‘learning curve’ in their lives has proven priceless (thanks Greg).
As a fisherman, Greg’s skill, cunning and determination made him one of the most successful luderick anglers on the coast, tediously creating his own floats and rigs to entice these politically correctly named fish. The way he cooks their tender fillets is masterful.
As a lover of the ocean, Greg presented himself as a keen and skilful bodysurfer. He still knows how to read a wave perfectly and is very subtle in letting boardriders know not to ride between the flags.
Squash and racquetball have always been a great hit-out for the champion sportsman. As long as the Bondi Waverley Squash Club continues to pour cold schooners on a Friday evening, you will find Greg sipping on a couple of quiet ones with a select few. He also loves his golf – that great character-building pursuit – and sometimes golf loves him. When golf doesn’t love Greg, it is best to leave him alone as his character continues to build.
In 1988, Greg was appointed to the Industrial Commission of NSW as a judge. His references were flawless and he was honoured with the distinct handle The Honourable Mr Justice Gregory Ian Maidment. Greg held this esteemed position for 13 years prior to his retirement.
On July 3, 2021, we will be wishing a happy 80th birthday to a man who continues to lead a full life on the hill at Bronte surrounded by his family. Lots of love, affection and gratitude from Lyn, Mark, Danielle, Bella, Georgia and Olivia.