The Northern Daily Leader is correct stating that I grew up and went to school (Tamworth West Public and THS) in my mother’s hometown of Tamworth, NSW, Australia. I was actually born in Homebush (Sydney NSW).
Having read all articles published in The Leader about me and my ordeal I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank The Leader for their objective and unbiased reporting.
To all my Tamworth-based relatives, especially cousin Susan Lorraine Ford, as well as her father (my uncle) Enos Bickle Scott, also my cousin Robyn Perry and her late mother (my aunt) Lucy Seymour, twin sister of my own late mother, Ellen Rodwell (nee Scott) – please accept my appreciation and gratitude for your genuine concerns and efforts on my behalf.
That is what coming from a country town (regional city) is really all about.
I believe that, as a result of having been instilled and raised with such values/ethos, my survival and subsequent rehabilitation and recovery have not been as arduous or challenging as some would generally imagine.
Our family connection with Tamworth dates back to at least 1915 when our great-grandfather, John Ditton Scott (1871-1955), transferred down from Glen Innes as a railway employee.
John Ditton Scott was the husband of Catherine M Scott and father of Mabel M Scott, Enos John Scott, Thomas R Scott and John C Scott.
My maternal grandparents, Enos John Scott (1893-1951) and wife Caroline Louisa Scott (nee Bickle)(1892-1981), had nine children.
It always brings a smile to my face whenever I recall my invalid mother mentioning to me (as a Tamworth kid) – “No matter how bad things are, there’s always someone worse off.”
News Editor’s Note:Readers will remember that Mr Rodwell was kidnapped from his home on the southern island of Mindanao in the Philippines where he had been teaching on December 2, 2011 .
He was under threat of imminent execution on the eve of his negotiated release after proof of live images had shocked Australians in the months leading up to his sudden release to US military forces on March 24, 2013.
Islamist terrorist group Abu Sayyaf had demanded extraordinary ransom amounts and in the end it was revealed that although against Australian government policy, a ransom of some $93,000 was paid.
The Leader reported on the impacts of Mr Rodwell’s kidnapping over that time and of the stress and trauma it caused to his Tamworth-based cousins Susan Ford and Robyn Perry.
That reporting also helped secure donations that went to Mr Rodwell’s release .