REBECCA Mullen loved helping others and adored children.
Now, the young doctor's legacy is being honoured by her family's push to create positive change, even amid their unimaginable grief after losing her in the Hunter Valley bus tragedy.
Dr Mullen's father Matt has thrown his support behind the STOP Bus Tragedies campaign.
The group launched a petition to install seatbelts on all buses in Australia and make it mandatory to wear them.
It's garnered close to 4000 signatures, but with the groundswell of community support in the wake of the devastating crash in June, Mr Mullen is confident there are others yet to be reached.
He made a heart wrenching plea for people to sign the e-petition before it closes at 11.59pm on August 31.
For the Singleton family, it's deeply personal.
"Initially, it was very, very confronting to be using the death of my most beautiful daughter to get attention for this campaign," Mr Mullen told ACM.
"But as I've thought about it, that's what she would want. That would be her legacy. She would want us to do this."
The push for mandatory seatbelts is just the start of a long road to better bus safety.
"If this campaign can prevent one person, one family, one brother, sister, mum, dad, fiance, from having to experience the pain that we're stuck with, and it's not going away, that will be an achievement," Mr Mullen said.
He and his wife have spent years calling for seatbelts on school buses, especially those that travel on the Hunter Expressway.
He said while the circumstances of the Hunter Valley crash are different to what the STOP Bus Tragedies group is fighting for, it had thrust upon his family the sheer tragedy that can stem from a bus accident.
He said he knew "Bec", a former member of the New England Nomads Australian Football Club, would be behind them.
"She loved children, just adored children, and if she felt that us doing this could potentially save one child's life, that would honour her," he said.
"She would be pushing behind us right now saying 'dad do it', so that's a big motivation for us, in that I know that's what she would want.
"It's hard but it's definitely to honour her and ... she would want some positivity to come out of what's been the most horrendous event for everyone involved."
The Wine Country Drive bus crash on the night of June 11 claimed the lives of 10 people, and injured dozens more. Investigations into the circumstances are continuing.
Mr Mullen said bus safety systems in Australia were "archaic" compared to other transport systems and other countries.
He said it had quickly become habit to click in when getting in a car or on a plane, and there's no reason buses should be different.
"You don't even remember that you've done it," he said.
"We need a cultural change, where it just becomes second nature to do that."
He said to anyone considering signing the petition online that it was straightforward - they just want buses to have belts, and for people to wear them.
"At the end of the day, that cannot hurt anyone travelling on a bus," he said.
"That can only achieve help, it can't cause any harm."
The STOP Bus Tragedies team, which includes some others rocked by the Hunter Valley crash, has already met with NSW Premier Chris Minns and Transport Minister Jo Haylen, and has experts involved.
It's come up with a seven-point plan for better bus safety.
Mr Mullen said amid the grief, there was a glimmer of hope for the future.
"I think this group that we're forming isn't going to go away," he said.
"This is the first step in a long process of making bus travel more safe, and it's a big step but the first one looking at long-term bus safety."
He thanked the community for their amazing support since "day dot", and asked anyone keen to help to sign the e-petition urgently.
To sign the e-petition titled "bus seatbelts mandatory nation-wide", visit https://www.aph.gov.au/e-petitions/petition/EN5237, fill in name and confirm via email, before it closes on August 31.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content:
- Bookmark northerndailyleader.com.au
- Make sure you are signed up for our breaking and regular headlines newsletters
- Follow us on Twitter
- Follow us on Instagram
- Follow us on Google New