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Malcolm Robert COLLESS Obituary
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Sunday, 16 December 2018

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Preview Entry
Sunday, 16 December 2018

Please don't submit copyrighted work; original poems, songs or prayers welcomed. reviews all Guest Book entries to ensure appropriate content. Our staff does not correct grammar or spelling.

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 Memories & Condolences
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November 13, 2017
A brief but sincere memory of knowing Malcolm in 1975/76 when we would meet as a small group of friends at the Film Club in Sydney normally on a Friday night. Only about 7 or 8 of us would gather and have a laugh and a few drinks at the end of the week. Malcolm of course with the Australian, I was with the Clerks Union and others from Qantas. What an unusual mob but we valued this very much. I regret that this group fell away after a couple of years but I still value the memory of my friend Malcolm. Condolences to the family.
November 9, 2017
I first met Malcolm when we were both cadets reporting Sydney's Central Court in the mid sixties,he for the Daily Mirror and me for the Daily Telegraph.Although one was an afternoon and the other a morning paper we usually both finished about 3 p.m. and would walk part way back to our offices together, he planning what to write for the next morning and me for that night.Perhaps because we weren't in head to head competition we became friends, until I was posted to Canberra and Malcolm went overseas.
We caught up again in 1977 when Malcolm went to Canberra as Political Correspondent for the Aus and I was working for "the toecutter" Senator Reg Withers. Malcolm got the scoop on Reg's sacking (he was the only journo I spoke to that night) and must have put in a good word for me because after a brief period of unemployment I joined the Aus Canberra bureau first as Weekend Australian political correspondent and then, when Warren Beeby went to Sydney as Deputy Editor, I became News Ltd Bureau Chief. Malcolm and I developed the perfect working relationship,with me handling the main story of the day while he was free to do what he did best: ferret around among his many contacts and break news.We also broke open more than a few bottles of Taylors Hermitage at the Lobby restaurant which was our office away from the office, and provided an escape from the dreariness of question time.
We would go there after the midday conference (instigated to bring all bureaus into a telephone hook up to ensure everyone knew the main stories of the day),a chore which Malcolm despised. One day, anxious to get to the Lobby, he picked up the phone handset and placed it in a drawer with the radio carrying the ABC news and went to lunch.The participants in the conference proclaimed it the most informative they had ever heard!
We also shared the distinction of being the only two journalists to be banned from travelling on Opposition Leader Bill Hayden's aircraft during the 1980 election campaign, a move which backfired as it freed us both to break a number of stories which did Labor no good as the campaign ground on.
When Malcolm told me he wanted to move from straight reporting to management I had mixed feelings: I knew it would be a good move for him (and the company) but, selfishly perhaps, thought it would leave a big hole in our Bureau, and it did, because Malcolm was irreplaceable.
I watched him, usually from a distance, as he moved through News Ltd managerial ranks,revived the Melbourne Herald/Sun Pic by melding them into a single paper,and then became a Director of News Ltd where his array of political contacts must have been a blessing. We got together from time to time, usually over lunch or, with our other mate Warwick Costin, at the CUB Beer and Beef Club black tie dinners in Canberra.
Although I've repeatedly thought about getting together in recent years it just hasn't happened, as the tyranny of distance was in the way,and I regret that.
Malcolm was a great journalist, a great raconteur, a great networker and a great mate. I will miss him dreadfully.
I very much regret Pamela and I will be unable to make it to his funeral, but we will hold our own private service at the same time. To Chris and Doone we send our most sincere condolences, sympathy and love. Words may not ease your sorrow at losing Malcolm but hearts can share your pain.

Russell and Pamela Schneider
November 7, 2017
Irmgard and I extend our sincere sympathy to Christine, Doone and Adam, Edward and their families. Although we did not have the opportunity to spend much time with Malcolm, those times when we did get together were warm, fun-filled and friendly. Malcolm was a likable, good bloke. He was impressive of his knowledge of the world and politics and a great raconteur. My most memorable time spent with Malcolm was when, as a youngster, he stayed with my family on our farm during one of his school holidays. We enjoyed showing the city kid the lore and ways of the bush kids. We wish you and your family strength and courage in your time of grief. Love and sympathy Cousin John and Irmgard