Heartfelt Thanks

I finally have a few minutes to catch my breath and thank all of you from the bottom of my heart for your thoughts, prayers and incredible generosity. The Redbubble community have been amazing and all my family and friend have commented on the love and support demonstrated by you all.

I thought as so many of you couldn’t be with us at the funeral to celebrate Axel’s life, that I would put the transcript here along with some pictures.

There were over 300 people at the funeral from all over Australia.

It was conducted by a teacher from the school both Glen and I attended (my older girls also attend this school now), he has been a part of our lives for over 20 years and it was fantastic to have him as a part of it.

Axel was carried in by his father, and 3 uncles to the The Book of Love by Peter Gabriel – it has always been one of my favourite songs.

On top of his coffin Meg and Zoe placed an arrangement of apgapanthus (Axel’s favourite flower he used to eat them!) and a framed photo of him.

I then read a poen written by Judy Walker titled Don’t tell me :

Please don’t tell me you know how I feel,
Unless you have lost your child too,
Please don’t tell me my broken heart will heal,
Because that is just not true,
Please don’t tell me my son is in a better place,
Though it is true, I want him here with me,
Don’t tell me someday I’ll hear his voice, see his face,
Beyond today I cannot see,
Don’t tell me it is time to move on,
Because I cannot,
Don’t tell me to face the fact he is gone,
Because denial is something I can’t stop,
Don’t tell me to be thankful for the time I had,
Because I wanted more,
Don’t tell me when I am my old self you will be glad,
I’ll never be as I was before,
What you can tell me is you will be here for me,
That you will listen when I talk of my child,
You can share with me my precious memories,
You can even cry with me for a while,
And please don’t hesitate to say his name,
Because it is something I long to hear everyday,
Friend please realize that I can never be the same,
But if you stand by me, you may like the new person I become someday.

Both Grandfather’s then said a few words together.

Meg and Zoe have to be the bravest little girls in the world, they both wrote a speech and read it to Axel…


As soon as you popped out into this world I knew you were going to be a cheeky rascal. You brought joy to this family, being Zoë and my first brother, mums first boy and glens first child.

U defiantly grew up to be a real man, you had a great character that no one could ever replace. I’ll never forget how you use to wake me up in the morning, coming into my room and yanking on my hair or your kisses, your kisses were the best in the world.

But the thing I’ll remember the most is the last time I saw you on Christmas morning, we were playing on my new toy and he said my name loud and clear he said “meg” and I will cherish that last moment with you for the rest of my life.

I hope that you remember how much I love you’ll never forget about our family. Axel you brought joy to everyone and as glen said “ you lit up our lives.” I am soo truly glad you were in my life. And just remember I will never forget you ever.

Nor your smile or your kisses and I always will the character you had, I will cherish you always and always remember that we all truly love you.


You are the best brother in the world and you still are even though you are in heaven. I hope you have a great time there, getting to know friends and family like warren, Paul, Matthew and my friend’s brother Harry. They will all be there for you, to play and to have fun. You will have the best time of your life in heaven.

You were cute and so very cuddly to all family and friends. I am glad you still in my life and that you are my brother. Its sad that you had a short life and that you only had one birthday but we will still celebrate them, so you know we will never forget about you.

You were a cheeky baby and that I will always be in my memories. I hope you will enjoy the presents Meg and I gave you, the Jessie doll and the care bear. You mean soo much to this family; it’s become stronger since you and Ty have been in our lives.

I love you to as far as you can go and back, you are my best brother in the whole wide world. We all will be with you every step you take! Lots of love Zoe your big sister.

Glen and I were then able to get up and support each other through our memories of Axel…


A friend said recently “Your book is already written before you are even born”

We believe that Axel was here for a purpose, his time was short but he touched everyone he met. His was a very short story but it was action packed.

Being a father is something I never expected to happen. It has changed me in ways I never imagined. Axel became my best friend, my buddy, my little man.

I came from a single life to a life with step daughters and a lovely wife. This began to mould me into a loving father and friend. I began to see that there was more to life than myself and that nothing could come close to life with a family. If Axel’s journey was shortened for a reason then it was this…to draw our family together tighter than ever before and to teach us that each day together is a blessing.


My arms are empty but my heart and mind are full of him. The fun that we shared will remain forever etched in time.

In our home there is always music playing and Axel loved to dance, his favourite music was rock – Jet, AC/DC and dance, anything with a beat. He had amazing rhythm, it would start at his head with a wobble, with merry eyes, his cheekiest grin would appear and then his hips would sway with his bum stuck right out. Finally he would stomp – the most hilarious thing you have ever seen, it would never fail to make us laugh.

There was something about this baby that made him unique. He was a magnet, he could draw people to him without uttering a word. We often had people stop us in the street to comment on his smile, and they would thank us for brightening up their day.

He was a naughty little snot at times, with a stubborn will (he got THAT from his mum), and a crazy temper (he got that from his mum too). But he always listened, he was willing to hear us and learn.

The best part of Axel’s day was the moment his Dada arrived home. He would drag me to the front door and when opened would bolt to Glen…so incredibly excited that he was home.

This little man was an unexpected surprise but he quickly became the joy of our lives, his love of life and infectious laugh brightened up the worst days.


Axel grew up in a house of laughter and joy, his sisters taught him to laugh, an amazing from the gut chuckle that rocked his entire body (so much so that last week he vomited mid laugh!!). He loved his sisters so much, he would light up every afternoon when they got in the car after school.

Axel adored Ty, his little brother, he tried to share everything with him, toys, food, dummy, blankie, kisses with lots of slobber. We only had to warn him to be gentle and he would ever so carefully place a kiss on Ty’s head, only to rip the dummy out of his mouth as soon as we weren’t looking and run as fast as he could!

He loved to be outdoors, if he was ever sad or upset you only had to open the front door and his face would light up and he was off exploring the world. He had no fear, he was always on an adventure, discovering new and amazing things every day.

Axel loved life with a passion, and he loved people with a passion too…his grandmothers were no exception. He loved going to Nanna’s each morning to steal her keys, he adored spending time with Grandma Karen as she spoiled him rotten and he always remembered his Nannie Annie no matter how far between visits demanding cuddles immediately.

Axel touched everyone he met.

He is unforgettable,

We will miss him forever.

During this time we played video footage from his time on earth – gorgeous happy memories…smiles and dancing and full of love.

The family then got up and formed a circle around Axel holding hands, while Sweet Child of Mine by Guns n Roses played in the background.

To finish off my father read a poem written by Daniel (DoctorJPhotography)


The gold in your hair
Is only a hint of the wealth I have in my heart

Because of you

And when the wind blows through it
It’s as if the very air around you takes no greater joy
Than in trying to match your spirit
In trying to take, if it could, just an ounce of your spirit with it
And you smile, as if you knew it

Tell me, little angel

How your eyes alone have lived for so many more years
Than the body that holds them

Somewhere, in a place beyond what my mind can understand
You seem to walk so effortlessly through

Tell me, my son

When you fit yourself so perfectly into my arms
When your laughter becomes the one
Ballad written by God Himself
That silences all the broken drums

It was as if everything about you, the purity of you
The you-ness of you
Every laugh, tear, and unintelligible word
Tried to tell a story
Of the place where you came from
More than what cameras, words, or minds could capture

That I would be good enough
To watch you breathe as you dream
That I was worthy enough
To hold your head on my chest when you cried
That I would deserve
To have a little rain pour down on me
To make the fields in my heart grow just a little greener

For one entire year
It will never be enough

To simply call it the greatest gift I have ever been given
And to know it was mine

For only one entire year
It will never be enough

For whenever rain falls
It inevitably must float back to the skies from where it came
And I am thirsty again

My dearest son
When I fly back home to you

Promise me you’ll take my hand in yours
And never let me go.

To finish we played Tears in Heaven by Eric Clapton, after which we all went outside with a red balloon each which were released at 4.30pm (along with many other red balloons all around the world).

There are so many people that I want to thank, but there are almost too many to mention. I have been encouraged and supported by all your comments and bubblemails, as well as your images, poems and art. This is an amazing community!

I especially want to thank

Sam for being so amazing with my girls and organising the print
Bill Fonseca for taking the photos at the funeral (that must have been a hard thing to do!)
Steve McLaren for all his support and videoing the funeral
Sara Lamond for organising a condolence book at the gallery and taking many photos of our family at the mural yesterday
Jeffrey Hamilton for painting such an amazing mural for Axel

Journal Comments

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