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Older News  » Parkview leaders honour 'Father of Irrigation'

Last updated 8:19 PM on 10 April 2013

Parkview student leaders Member for Murrumbidgee Adrian Piccoli and Member for Riverina Michael McCormack.

Parkview Public School leaders have joined many other local residents in honouring the man who ensured our township was actually founded Sir Samuel McCaughey.

As reported in The Irrigator during the week, the legacy of the "father of irrigation", Sir Samuel McCaughey, was set in stone on the weekend when a statue was unveiled in his honour.

About 150 people attended the event at McCaughey Park in Yanco on Saturday morning, with attendees including at least 30 of Sir Samuel's descendants.

Member for Murrumbidgee Adrian Piccoli and Member for Riverina Michael McCormack conducted the official unveiling by revealing the statue from underneath a World War II parachute.

The statue project was the brainchild of two Leeton shire councillors with close links to Parkview PS, Greg O'Callaghan and Peter Davidson, with many individuals and organisations donating funds to ensure it came to fruition.

"I would just like to say how proud I am to see such a wonderful crowd here today," Councillor O'Callaghan said. "I'm sure we all agree the statue is fantastic ... when we formed the centenary committee we started looking at people to highlight.

"For myself I couldn't go past Sir Samuel because without his foresight the communities of Yanco and Leeton wouldn't exist.

"As you can it's (the statue) a major spectacle."

Also speaking on the day was mayor Paul Maytom and McCaughey descendant Michael Pheils, who provided a comprehensive history of Sir Samuel's life and philanthropy.

Mr Piccoli and Mr McCormack also addressed the crowd.

"It's important to recognise our past and Sir Samuel is an absolute critical part of that," Mr Piccoli said.

"When you read his history and the history of this area it's almost unbelievable ... this region is one of the most critical areas in Australia and without Sir Samuel it perhaps wouldn't be that way.

"The legacy that has been left by this man is just incredible."

The bronze statue has etchings on its granite base of Sir Samuel's homestead, his Vermont sheep and machinery he was association with.

It faces west, looking over land that was once his.