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Loved ones honour 'legend' Tiaro crash victim

IN MEMORY: Cynthia Guteridge (L) lost her much-loved husband and retired police officer Kevin Guteridge in a tragic fatal crash near Tiaro on Monday.
IN MEMORY: Cynthia Guteridge (L) lost her much-loved husband and retired police officer Kevin Guteridge in a tragic fatal crash near Tiaro on Monday. Facebook

WITH honour Kevin Guteridge served communities across Queensland in the decades he worked as a police officer and his influence will be felt long after his tragic death this week.

The former police officer and Hervey Bay man was tragically killed in a two car crash south of Tiaro on Monday.

The 86-year-old has been remembered as a loving family man and a legend within the Queensland Police Service for his community engagement.

His wife Cynthia, 84, was also in the crash and is recovering in hospital.

Close family friend and retired police officer Rowan Bond has spoken to the Chronicle on behalf of the Guteridge family and shared some of his fondest memories of Kevin.

From Birdsville to Beenleigh, Kevin touched the hearts of community members he served, and the officers who served alongside him.

"He's quite a legend in the police," Mr Bond said.

"He was sworn in in the 50s and linked in the community and policing, he was really close to the community.

"He was really approachable and always made the time for his colleagues, he was that way with his family too."

TRAGIC: Kevin Guteridge died when his car collided with another vehicle on Monday.
TRAGIC: Kevin Guteridge died when his car collided with another vehicle on Monday.

Kevin and Cynthia were married for more than 60 years, and met while Kevin was transferring a mental health patient from Cloncurry to Townsville.

Because the patient was a woman, Kevin was required to organise a female escort to go with him.

That escort was Cynthia who was working as a nurse at the time.

The pair fell in love and were married not long after.

Kevin retired from the Queensland Police Service as a Senior Sergeant in 1986, working in Beenleigh.

During his time as an officer, he worked in 14 stations including Nanango, Townsville, Rockhampton, Clayfield, Aramac and Mt Isa.

Kevin's work in the community has left a lasting impression on his six children; Kevin (Jnr) who is also a police officer, Lance, Bob, Chris, Helen and Joanne.

All four of Kevin's sons have gone on to become police officers, with Bob retiring in 2015.

Joanne also serves the community like her father and mother did, working as a nurse in Laidley.

Helen is an art dealer living in Hong Kong.

Mr Bond said the whole Guteridge family and loved ones had been left "gobsmacked" by the horrific crash.

"It's left a big hole in all of our lives," he said.

"It is a real tragedy."

Mr Bond has known the Guteridge family for 42 years, even training in the police academy with Kevin's son, Chris.

Working as a police officer in Bundaberg with Kevin (Jnr), Mr Bond grew very close to the entire Guteridge family, including Kevin (Snr).

"He was a police officer for 36 years and just as importantly, he was a family man, a real gentlemanly fellow," he said.

"When you think of your grandfather, and all of the good things that a grandfather is, that was Kevin.

Kevin was remembered as having a strong sense of humour, and was "always up for a beer and a chat".

Mr Bond said his friend's death had "left a hole in all our lives".

The Guteridge family plans to hold a private ceremony to honour Kevin's life in the next few weeks.

Topics:  editors picks fccrash fcpolice tiaro tribute



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