Dedicated to mental health nursing

Edward (Eddie) Michael Taylor
12 September 1926 – 12 October 2006

Eddie was born on 12 September 1926 in Ireland, the third of six children. He grew up in Scotland where his father worked in the shipyards. During the war Eddie returned to Ireland aged 15 to look after the family farm. He did this for three years, living alone with an uncle on the next farm. After that he went back to Scotland.

At 22 Eddie started training as a psychiatric nurse at Woodlea Hospital in Scotland, where he met his future wife Moira. He followed his psychiatric training with general training at Stobhill Hospital in Scotland.

Eddie and Moira married on 10 September 1955 and had three children – Moira, Eamonn and Keiran.

In June 1964, they migrated to Australia and Eddie began work at North Ryde (now Macquarie) Hospital in Sydney. He became a supervisor (ADON) there as well as at Peat and Milson Island and Marsden. He also worked at St John of God Hospital.

We did not meet Eddie until he retired. He got bored and returned to work in 1986 in the new Acute Psychiatric Unit at Wollongong Hospital. He later worked at Port Kembla in psychiatric nursing and finally at Shellharbour, also in psychiatric nursing. After 16 years, he left in 2002 due to poor health.

Eddie continued to enjoy golf and also played soccer until his fifties.

Eddie was always surprised to hear that he was a role model for the next generation of mental health nurses. He kept the ideal of mental health nursing alive in difficult times and his compassion, wisdom and sense of humour (who can forget the story of the seagulls and the Largactil?) will be remembered. He died last year just after his 80th birthday.

By Margaret Brown, Dementia Care CNC, SESIAHS; and Anna Treloar, RN, Justice Health Service Mid North Coast Correctional Centre