Growing up on a NSW Aboriginal mission which only permitted him to go to grade three, he went on to earn money playing football, boxing and running. He was awarded an MBE and OBE before Aboriginal people were even recognised as citizens. His commitment as a father was recognised when he was awarded Father of the Year. All this in between his extensive work caring for Aboriginal people, becoming a pastor and pushing for change.
In 1972, he became the first Aboriginal person to be knighted and in 1976 he was appointed Governor of South Australia by Don Dunstan. Unfortunately, ill health prevented him from completing a full term.
Last week the extraordinary achievements of Australia’s only Aboriginal Governor, were celebrated at Government house where people were keen to reminisce about what they remembered of this great Australian.
When Christine Brown spotted Lowitja O’Donohue at the function, she couldn’t help but ask her about past media stories of her becoming a future governor.
Producer: Christine Brown