A Giant Among Men

Following the sad passing of John Moxon, tributes have been flowing strongly for a man who was admired, not just for his character and presence, but also for his incredible contribution to Australia’s disability community.

Jeremy Muir knew John both professionally and as a friend and has written a fitting accolade of gratitude, respect and admiration to a giant among men.

He has kindly allowed us to share his memories and heartfelt celebration of John and his legacy that he has left us all.

“If you looked up the word ‘conviction’ in the dictionary you would most likely find ‘John Moxon’.  John was one of those people who knew how to fight the good fight and he did so with intelligence, research, conviction and good old fashion gusto.  His energy was endless and contagious.

John was long time member/President of the Physical Disability Council of NSW (PDCNSW) and then was a founding member and former President of the PDC Australia, now PDA. 

John fought for the rights, not just of people with physical disabilities but disability rights in general.  John worked tirelessly for over 30 years advocating for the rights of people with disabilities at a national and a local level.  He won well deserved awards and was applauded by those at the highest level.  He was truly an amazing human being.

John was a friend, a much better friend to me than I was to him.  He taught me so much about living, about how to live successfully with a physical disability.  John helped me believe I belonged and that I had every right to belong.  He helped me understand that it was okay to ask for help and to give it.  He truly embodied the word empowerment and he never waived from its depth and meaning.

John was great fun.  Some of my fondest memories are of having dinner at a suitable accessible restaurant after a day-long meeting with him, his wonderful wife Margaret, the dry and smart Kevin Byrne (RIP), the formidable Maurice Corcoran and the always encouraging and clever Sue Egan where we would often talk and laugh for hours.  I especially loved listening to John’s stories of his racing car driver days and when he was on student radio at university. He felt to me like such a rebel leader, which I found fascinating.  He had such confidence, always, always.

John always appeared to love what he did, and I used to think how can I bottle that self belief.  John loved Margaret, he loved his children and his grand children with that same conviction.  John didn’t do things by half.

When you are accessing an accessible building, riding on accessible transport, attending an accessible concert or event, know that it is because John fought for it, John audited it, John campaigned for it, John contributed to the policy and legislation for it.

The world is now a better place because of John Moxon and I’m a better person for knowing him.”

Vale John Moxon.

1938-2022

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