Uncle Nurdon’s amazing life of achievement
During NAIDOC Week (July 4-11), Carinity celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Indigenous Australians such as Uncle Nurdon Serico.
Uncle Nurdon, a resident of the Carinity Hilltop aged care community at Kelvin Grove in Brisbane, has lived an amazing life full of outstanding achievements.
He is a Gubbi Gubbi-Kabi Kabi Elder who worked extensively with Indigenous communities and the health system in Queensland.
As patron of Balaangala Garden Group, a reconciliation group which brings together Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians through creative practices, Uncle Nurdon devoted his time to sharing and preserving his culture.
This included sharing his tradition of possum skin cloak making – artwork he exhibited at the Museum of Brisbane – and giving insight into traditional ways of caring for our country, such as resourcefulness and sustainability.
In 1975, he become first Aboriginal person in Australia to become a fully qualified radiographer. A Churchill Scholar for radiography, he went to the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States on his study tour.
Queensland’s first Neuro Radiographer, Uncle Nurdon worked as a radiographer for the Royal Brisbane Hospital and Queensland Health Department for 49 years and set up training programmes for regional hospitals.
He was a member of the Advisory Council on Aboriginal Life at the National Museum and is a Life Member of the Aboriginal Health Service in Brisbane.
Uncle Nurdon was a talented sportsman. He was a Queensland schools athletics title holder for sprinting and long jump and later founded Bardon Athletics Club.
He played top-grade rugby league for Wests Panthers for 15 years and had long involvements with The Gap Pastime Cricket Club and the Ashgrove and The Gap historical societies.
Uncle Nurdon spent a lot of time educating young people, visiting schools and kindergartens to share stories and artefacts.
In his retirement, Uncle Nurdon spent ten years spent with the Murri Court, counselling offenders and advising the magistrates of Aboriginal lore and laws.
In recognition of his contributions to his local community, Uncle Nurdon was awarded the Lord Mayor’s Cultural-Arts Award at the 2018 Brisbane City Council Australia Day Awards.
“My mother always told me that it was important to get a good education and to use that education to give back to my community. I try to live by that,” Uncle Nurdon said.
Information sourced from The Gap Historical Society.