Many members of Rostrum attended Eddie’s celebration of life service at Riverside Baptist College, Seventeen Mile Rocks on Sunday 9th January.  Family members included son Cameron Fee, industrial psychologist, daughter Melita MacMahon, midwife, who lives in Armidale NSW, and her three children Alex, Georgia and Jessica. All three of Eddie’s grandchildren spoke beautifully. Cameron and Melita spoke fondly about their mother Beverley, former wife of Eddie.

Fmn Brian Korner delivered an excellent tribute on behalf of Rostrum Queensland. 

Eddie was elected president of Queensland Rostrum in 1996 following a very keenly contested election campaign. He effectively led Queensland Rostrum for three years before taking on the role of National President for a subsequent three years. His dedication to Rostrum included his inauguration of the Eddie Fee After Dinner Speaking Competition in 2000.

Eddie Fee photoEddie was born in the Bundaberg district on 22nd April, 1933 from a farming background. He attended the Bundaberg SHS and later studied accountancy. He was good at sport, particularly tennis, and in his primary school days played against a young Rod Laver. Cameron said that his father did not win that match.

Eddie was the longest serving foundation member of Club 17, (founded 1972). He remained an active member until illness intervened in 2017. He was also a foundation member of Club 39, (founded 1995). Not only did Eddie win the prestigious Arch Williams Memorial “Speaker of the Year” in 1976 and 2012 but won the right to represent Queensland in the Sidney Wicks Speaking Competition national final in Perth in 2005.

On moving to Brisbane Eddie continued to play tennis at Kenmore for 20 years or more. His other interests included Golf, Rotary and classical music. Eddie was a long-term presenter on Classic FM 103.7. Eddie not only prepared his own program of classical music, but delivered it as well, whereas most other presenters had the program prepared for them. Bill Smith remembers Eddie being on 103.7 Drive Time Classics from 4.00pm-6.00pm at least weekly on occasions – and also on the station’s fund raising weekends.

The 1990’s presented difficulties in community organisations with the advent of the mobile phone and social media. Not only was the membership growth of Rostrum impacted but Rotary, Bowls, Toastmasters and Lions clubs suffered as well. 

Rostrum members who attended the Celelebration of Life Service included Bill Smith, Maurice Whybrow, Brian Korner, David Ng, Doug Fergusson, Don Mansfield and Bernie Ketter. An ex member of Rostrum and founding member of Club 17, Malcolm Thorne and his wife were also there. Quite a large number of people were in attendance.

Following a long illness Eddie passed away on 25th October 2021, aged 88 years and cremated on the 3rd November 2021. At his request Eddie’s ashes were returned to Bundaberg.

More about Eddie may be found in the Brief History of Rostrum Queensland available for download from the Rostrum website.

Thoughts from Fmn Bill Smith, Fmn Ian Olsson and Fmn Brian Korner.


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