A Bundjalung Elder and the chair of the Koori Mail – Australia’s national Indigenous newspaper – has passed away.
Based in the Lismore region, Uncle Russell Kapeen was the CEO of the Kurrachee Aboriginal Co-operative, a long-time member and former Chair of the Bogal Local Aboriginal Land Council.
Uncle Russell also chaired the Koori Mail for the past 24 years, a fortnightly print publication founded in 1991.
In a media statement, the Chair of the NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) Roy Ah-See said Uncle Russell’s dedication to Land Rights will be one of his greatest legacies.
“Uncle Russell Kapeen was deeply involved with Land Rights for decades and was an outstanding leader at Bogal LALC and beyond,” Mr Ah-See said.
“On behalf of the Land Rights network, I send my deepest condolences to the Kapeen family.”
Tina Williams said that Bundjalung communities have lost a committed and determined leader and mentor.
“Uncle Russell was committed to strengthening Kurrachee Aboriginal Co-operative and Bogal LALC and growing employment, housing and other services in Coraki, Box Ridge and the broader Bundjalung communities.
“He was a strong and stable backbone of our community and will be missed immensely,” she said.
Uncle Russell passed away on Saturday May 4, in his home at Coraki, NSW. The funeral will be held in Coraki on Friday May 24. You can find out more details from Koori Mail’s Facebook page here.
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