Jeffery Celebration
A celebration of the life of the Late Major General Jeffery AC AO (Mil) CVO MC (Retd).

Celebrating the life of former WA Governor, the Late Major General Michael Jeffery

A special event at Government House today to celebrate the life of the Late Major General Michael Jeffery AC, AO (Mil), CV), MC (Retd).

Photo – The Governor escorts Mrs Jeffery into the memorial service in the Government House Ballroom

The Hon Major General Jeffery passed away in December 2020 and today his wife Marlena and family joined Governor Beazley, Ms Annus, special guests and friends to acknowledge the contribution he made to Western Australia.

Born in Wiluna in 1937 and educated at Kent Street High School and the Royal Military College Duntroon, Major General Jeffery was Western Australia’s 27th Governor from 1993 until 2000.

In 2003 he was sworn in as Australia’s 24th Governor-General, a role he held for just over five years.

Major General Jeffery was awarded a Companion of the Order of Australia, Commander of the Royal Victorian Order and a Citizen of Western Australia for his services to the state, as well as Chancellor and Principal Companion of the Order of Australia. He was also awarded Honorary Doctorate of Technology by Curtin University.

Mrs Marlena Jeffery told the gathering that her husband was a very proud West Australian and that his time in WA and as WA Governor were some of his happiest years.

“His seven years as State Governor formed the catalyst for the rest of his life. He travelled the length and breadth of this state visiting regions and rural communities, visiting deserts and forests, getting involved in all aspects of life and supporting hundreds of organisations through patronages,” said Mrs Jeffery.

“His time as WA Governor was an enlightening and rewarding privilege and he loved every minute of it.”

Today’s celebration saw the coming together of former Premiers, dignitaries, industry, community leaders and friends who all knew or worked with Major General Jeffery. In addition to the current Governor, previous WA Governors in attendance included The Hon Kerry Sanderson AC, SVO, The Hon Dr Ken Michael AC and The Hon Malcolm McCusker AC, CVO, QC.

In paying tribute to the Late Major General Jeffery, the Governor told how he had first met Michael and Marlena Jeffery when he was Minister for Defence and described him as a man who was known for his courage, his oratory and his breadth of vision as a senior army officer. He also described him very much as a friend.

“He made little people feel big wherever he went and left behind a warm trail of affection, respect and goodwill, state wide,” said the Governor.

“Deepest condolences to Marlena and the family. You and his friends are custodians of the memory of a great West Australian, Australian, soldier, Governor, Governor-General and superb human being.”

The Governor and Ms Annus had earlier met with Mrs Jeffery, welcoming her back to Government House where she had spent so much of her time when her husband was Governor of Western Australia.

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