Barwon Heads Bowling Club life member Sandra Green died at the age of 78, within weeks of a terminal cancer diagnosis. More than 120 family and friends, including many bowls club members dressed in uniform, attended the service that was hosted by Kings Funerals. Sandra's daughter Helen Benjamin and fellow club member Ken Allen spoke movingly of her love for family and the bowls club.
Sandra was the second of five children born to Leslie and Winnifred Arscott. She was born in Torquay, Devon England, on August 14, 1943. Who was to know that her life would come to an end close to another town of Torquay halfway around the world.
Sandra had two sisters, Carole and Susan and two brothers Geoffrey and Kevin. Kevin is the last remaining sibling, he is living in England. Her father was in the RAF and they travelled around England and overseas. She fondly remembered living in flats in Germany, her best friend was Celia and they sang in the choir.
Sandra met Denis in 1963 and after a short courtship they were expecting a baby. Arriving home at her parents' she made Denis go upstairs to tell her Mother whilst she waited at the bottom!
Sandra and Denis married in April 1964, Helen was born in September 1964, followed by Sally in June 1966, and Andrew in May 1970. Denis was also in the RAF and the family moved around England and spent time in Singapore & Germany. Denis left the RAF in 1975.
Sandra, Denis and the children emigrated to Australia in 1977. It was a big move with three children aged 13,11 and 7. They lived in Barwon Heads close to Denis' parents.
Sandra tried very hard to catch on to the Aussie slang, but sometimes made a blunder. On a pokie bus trip with Denis' workmates from McHarry's Buslines, the bus was waiting to leave and someone asked, "Where is Denis?" Sandra replied, "He is just getting a cannie!" confusing herself with the term 'tinnie'. She was politically correct as beer came in a can not a tin.
Once settled in Barwon Heads, they built their first home in Von Nida Ave. Life in Barwon Heads was busy: Sandra joined Denis, Helen and Andrew into the Barwon Heads Scout Group where she became the Group Leader, a voluntary position she held for many years.
In 1988 they sold the house and embarked on a round the world trip following Denis's ill health. On their return they travelled up the east coast in search of a warmer climate, settling in Ballina NSW.
In the early 1990's Sandra and Denis went their separate ways and Sandra returned to Victoria to be closer to the children and the beginning of the births of her eight grandchildren: Abbey, Sam, Katie, Riley, Jack, Corey, Harry and Maggie.
Sandra was always ready and willing to help out with the grandchildren and they have fond memories of those times together.
Once Sandra joined the Barwon Heads Bowling Club, her life revolved around the bowls and the bowling club. Heaven help the children if they organised anything on a bowls day!
She held many positions on committees and on the board. Her most recent position was as the Social Secretary and Sponsorship Co-ordinator. She excelled at these roles.
Up until her recent diagnosis she would often be seen pounding the pavement off Hitchcock Ave, in and out of the shops seeking sponsorship or donations for raffles. She was persistent and hard to say no to.
In 2016 great-grandchildren began to arrive: Zali in 2016, Jaxon in 2019, Harley in 2021 and Apollo in 2022. She was always ready to have baby cuddles.
Sandra was a fit, active and fiercely independent woman right to the end. She walked most places in Barwon Heads and caught the bus in and out of Geelong as she never held a drivers licence. Something Helen, Sally and Andrew didn't thank her for during their childhood as they had to walk everywhere too.
In early April, Sandra became unwell and investigations revealed Stage 4 cancer. It was inoperable and treatment was not an option. She was stoic as always and with the family made some plans and was looking to create a bucket list of things she wanted to do. Unfortunately her deterioration was rapid and she was admitted to hospital with some concerning delirium and then transferred to palliative care at the McKellar Centre on May 10. She continued to decline rapidly in the presence of the family and passed away on Tuesday, May 17 surrounded by her loving family.
Her passing appropriately occurred during National Volunteers Week.
Bowling club member Ken Allen pays tribute
Sandra has been a member of the Barwon Heads Bowling Club for 26 years and she was certainly busy during that time. She has been the Ladies President for seven years until the club was amalgamated, with ladies and men together, and formed a board of management.
She then took on the role of social director and became a member of the board. Later she took on the job of Catering Director as well as Social Director.
She also competed in the club championships and was runner up about four times in the singles championship until she won her first championship in 2011 and another in 2019 .
Sandra also won the ladies pairs four times and the mixed pairs seven times.
She also took on the job of sponsorship director. In this job she walked the streets of Barwon Heads talking with many of our local businesses to help the bowling club with sponsors. I did ask her if she made any money for herself and she had a good laugh.
She was awarded a life membership of the bowling club which was richly deserved.
Her father-in-law Ted Green was also awarded a life membership, so that proves the importance of the bowling club to the Green family. We at the bowling club thank them for their hard work over many years.
Rest in peace Sandra.
Originally published as Barwon Heads club champion dies suddenly