ANGAIR members were saddened at the death of Everett Foster OAM, an Honorary Life Member ANGAIR, who died on October 28, aged 91.
An ANGAIR member since the early 1980’s, Everett has left a legacy in the orchid world that willl surely never be forgotten. From his background in textile chemistry, he brought all his developed analytical skills, and interwove them with enthusiasm and passion, to promote the conservation of Australian native orchids.
It was the preservation of these species in their own habitat that was Everett’s main goal, and this was the motivation for the production, in 1999, of Orchids of the Anglesea District, of which he was the co-author. This book, supported by ANGAIR, is now in its third edition, and has done so much to alert people to the beauty of native orchids, and the need to take every precaution to ensure they are preserved for the delight of future generations.
Everett was an ANGAIR Committee member for twenty years, 1982–2002, and during this time contributed to the health of the organisation in many ways. He co-ordinated the ANGAIR SHOW for three years,1994–1996, and lead orchid field trips in the district, in which many of our members participated.
A walk with Everett in orchid territory was never to be forgotten (shown here on his last visit to Anglesea with his wife Margaret in July 2010). Regardless of the weather, he would lead field excursions in a variety of areas, and many of our members will value their memories of Everett sharing his love and knowledge for the many species that he knew just how to find. He never forgot where he had found particular species growing – beneath a particular tree, beside a certain track, in a gravel pit, on a grassy slope – they were almost always there. Despite his deteriorating health he kept his interest in observing orchids in the field to the end – he was thrilled to see the Helmet Orchids flowering so well at Gum Flats in July this year.
Everett was a man of compassion, generosity, friendship and enthusiasm within many fields. In 2007 he was awarded the OAM for service to the conservation of Australian native orchids, and to the community of the Geelong region through heritage, church and sporting organisations.
As ANGAIR members, we were able to share in the life of this unassuming man, and we will treasure our memories. Our thoughts are with his wife, Margaret, who supported him in so many of his activities, and their family at this sad time.
We thank Everett for the tremendous contribution he has made to so many people.