Officials from around the country have expressed their condolences after learning of the passing of Terry Tindale, a life-member of the MUA
National Secretary Paddy Crumlin said Terry was personal friend and mentor of his.
“He asked me to first relieve in office in Port Kembla when he took over from Snowy Webster as Branch secretary. It was an experience that changed the direction of my and my family's life,” Paddy said.
Terry went to sea in 1947 and worked aboard many ships, most famously perhaps working on Iron Boats – namely the Iron Master and the Iron Yambi.
Terry recalled his time aboard these ships not so long ago when he spoke at Iron Boat Day in 2010.
He was well recognised and respected as Bosun on board many of the vessels he worked before taking up the SNSW Branch Secretary of the Seamen’s Union of Australia.
“Terry's election followed an enormous reputation on the Australian coast for his seafaring skills and political and industrial commitment,” Paddy said.
“He was a committed socialist during the tough political years of the Cold War for all progressive activists and a renowned and experienced internationalist.
“Terry's achievements were legendary on the Iron boats and in the land of the ‘Long red Cloud’, as he called Port Kembla, internationally, in the union and in the South Coast Trades and Labour Council.
“His working class credentials, political understanding and raucous good humour won the day consistently and ensured Wollongong and the South Coast remained the heartland for militant activity.
“Terry was particularly proud of his grandson, Ben, who has followed his grandfather to sea as a respected, active trade unionist and known as an esteemed delegate.
“On behalf of our union and our members staff and officials and the affiliates of the International Transport Workers Federation and my family, I extend our deepest and most sincere sympathies to Annette, Renay, Danielle and Tracey and their grand children and great-grandchildren on Terry's passing after a long, rich, respected and fulfilling life.”
Paddy said Terry has left an indelible mark on Australian trade unionism and progressive activism.
“Vale comrade Tindale, well found, greatly loved and now at peace,” he said.
Terry was also a life member South Coast Labour Council, life member of South Coast May Day Committee and was a member of the Port Kembla Branch of MUSAA.
Queensland Branch Secretary Mick Carr said Terry was well respected by all who knew him.
“He was always with a good yarn to share, he will be sadly missed but never forgotten,” Mick said.
Meanwhile Sydney Branch Assistant Secretary Joe Deakin recalled Terry taking him under his wing when he first went to sea and literally showed Joe the ropes.
“Terry to me was a straight up and down knock about who called a spade a spade. Terry had plenty of humour, there’s no two ways about that, but if Tindale didn’t like you then you soon got the message,” Joe said.
“Not a day went by that my old mate didn’t show me or tell me something new about the seagoing industry and from that first day till now I’m eternally grateful to Terry for teaching a raw boned wharfie how to become a good seafarer.
“Terry Tindale, one of the best blokes you could ever wish to meet.”
Current SNSW branch secretary Garry Keane said Terry was a true internationalist, a fighter for workers rights and a stalwart in the union movement on the south coast.
“He did it pretty tough over the last couple of years but took it all on the chin, there was no whinging from this true member of the old school,” Keane said
“A great comrade and he will be sadly missed.”
Funeral Details: 2pm on Friday, March 14. Berkeley Crematorium, Berkeley Road, Unanderra.