I share with deep sadness the passing of Vanessa Anne Hurst who attended Cardijn College from 1996 to 2001. Vanessa will be well known to the Cardijn community. I first met Vanessa when I started as principal in 2005 and then got to know her better at World Youth Day Sydney in 2008. Vanessa lived a beautiful life, full of love and joy. In spite of her many physical challenges, nothing stopped her from being present to people and contributing to her community. She was a great inspiration, a model of courage and determination and moreover a person who set out to change the world.
I last saw Vanessa in March this year at the O’Sullivan Beach Sports and Community Centre where she was acknowledged for her community service at the Katrine Hildyard community service awards. We will miss Vanessa very much – her infectious smile, her wonderful role modelling and her sincere friendship. Rest in peace Vanessa.