My Second Home - North Fitzroy - The Donald Mackay Connection By Ron Hailes

Somewhere around 1961 my father got a new job as Manager of the Melbourne Firearms Company and with this job came a house that was located behind one of their shops in North Fitzroy. This shop was managed by a man called George Joseph, it was a typical house behind a shop, nothing remarkable but a step up in comfort from my first home, at least the toilet was inside and connected to sewerage.

It was a funny building and if you are from Melbourne you may know that St Georges Road has funny intersections that come in at all angles, creating odd shapes houses.

By 1960 Melbourne was being flooded by new arrivals and the Italian's loved the Fitzroy/Carlton area, lots of great restaurants started to pop people up, mixed in with the pure Australian vibe of the Fitzroy Footy Ground. In the 60's Australia was changing and although I didn't know it at the time my time in this house would see me being touched by one of the biggest crimes in our short history.

Donald Mackay was an anti drugs campaigner from Griffith NSW who was murdered in July 1977. The man who was charged with the murder was James Bazley. History would reveal that long after we left North Fitzroy, George Joseph, by then an independent gun dealer, sold the gun to James Bazley that the police allege was used to murder Donald Mackay. George and James later had a lovely time as guests of Her Majesties Prisons. Some close friends now live in North Fitzroy and I love to visit and remember my brush with crime!!


I am a sometimes writer, stand up comic and MC - these are my passions but In the real world I travel throughout SE Asia training sales and management staff in the Auto Industry

See Ron's profile.


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