George Bender, the Chinchilla farmer who had his underground water ruined by gas miners. He fought them for 8 or 10 years
but gave up last week by committing suicide.
Listen to Alan Jones on Mining ruining land.[audio:http://webstore.2gb.com.s3.amazonaws.com/audio/the-alan-jones-breakfast-show/201510/19-alan-jones—–elizabeth-farrell.mp3]
Every landholder should be aware of the treatment being meted out in mining areas – it could come to a place near you one day. Every effort should be made to have protection for landholders and to see that it is enforced NOW.
The Bender family of Chinchilla, a rural town about 260km from Brisbane, has spoken of their pain and grief after losing a father and a husband to suicide.
George Bender passed away on Wednesday afternoon in a Brisbane hospital after being airlifted from Chinchilla.
He was a well-known campaigner for the rights of landholders in negotiations with coal seam gas (CSG) companies.
His daughter Helen described her father as loving, and jovial, who was a happy man who loved to sing and whistle.
“He was a man who loved his land, and it had to be farmed correctly,” she said.
“Unfortunately he died of a broken heart, as he became a shadow of what he used to be.
“He didn’t give up, his heart broke, and that was it.
“He wasn’t a selfish person, he was fighting for Hopeland’s future and for tomorrow.
“He was a grain, cotton, and livestock producer who was a traditionalist and inter-generational who wanted to secure his land.”
He is survived by his wife Pam, four sons Neil, Tony, Brian, Gary and his only daughter Helen.
Support is available for anyone who may be distressed by calling Lifeline 131 114, Mensline 1300 789 978, Kids Helpline 1800 551 800.