‘A true gentleman’: Community loses an icon
A GENTLEMAN if ever there was one.
The Granite Belt and the village of Liston lost one their most revered community members on Friday when Peter Bonner sadly succumbed to cancer.
January and February this year were two big months for Mr Bonner and his family.
In January he was named Citizen of the Year at the Tenterfield Australia Day awards and in February, the Stanthorpe showgrounds' exhibition centre was named in his honour.
Stanthorpe Agricultural Show Society president Brett Boatfield said he saw Mr Bonner as his mentor.
"He was what an agricultural society stands for," Mr Boatfield said.
"He was our rock.
"He'd make sure things were done and motivate all of us and keep us on track.
"Peter was the driver behind a lot of the things the show society have done," he said.
Mr Bonner was involved in the Stanthorpe Show, in some capacity, for more than 60 years.
He served two terms as president and played an integral role in seeing the exhibition centre constructed.
"He was my mentor," Mr Boatfield said.
"He was the one who nominated me for my presidency.
"To lose him … I was gutted when his son Tim rang me."
He also served on the Liston War Memorial Trust, operated Aloomba Lavendar Farm with wife Tere and was a rural firey in the Liston area, where six generations of the Bonner family have resided.
Mr Bonner referred to Liston as 'God's country'.
Decades of his life were dedicated to the Stanthorpe Saleyards.
"He was an integral part of running the cattle sales for many years," Mr Boatfield said.
"I'm so glad we had the dedication of the exhibition centre at this year's show and he was able to be there and enjoy the moment.
"It's up to us now to continue his legacy."
Mr Bonner leaves behind his wife, two sons and five grandkids.
"He loved his family and he served his community to the absolute fullest," grandson, Adam Bonner said in a heartfelt post on social media.
Mr Boatfield said the show society would look to do something at the 2021 Stanthorpe Show in honour of Mr Bonner.
No details about his funeral have been released.
"One of the most frustrating things is with COVID-19 we can't have a proper funeral. It'd be one of the biggest the district has ever seen.
"A lot would want to pay their respects to a true gentleman," Mr Boatfield said.