Jimmy Dollan OB

Obituary: Jimmy Dollan
Died: March 11, 2023 in Sydney

On 11 March 2023 Jimmy Dollan died peacefully from heart failure at home in Sydney RIP.

He was the grandson of Sir Patrick Joseph Dollan (1885-1963), LordProvost of Glasgow (1938 – 1941), the first to come from a Catholic Irish background. Jim first attended Carlekemp, before going on to Fort Augustus where he made an immediate impact in March 1956 in Shakespeare’s ‘Macbeth’ giving what The Corbiereviewer described as an ‘unnerving’ Third Witch and following this in July of the same year in Gilbert and Sullivan’s ‘Gondoliers’ after which the reviewer stated that ‘We cannot conclude without mentioning J. Dollan’s charmingly coy simper as a maiden approached by a gondolier …’ Jim later wrote that Fort Augustus ‘taught me to stand up for myself and to respect my superiors and elders which helped me a lot in the real world.’

After studying at College Jim worked on a fishing boat. It was very hard, but he learned some great things. Then he signed up in crewing for British European Airlines in Glasgow. It was there that he met his wife Anne and they then moved to Australia in 1974. After a brief stint at a steel mill, he joined TAA and Australian Airlines — for what eventually became Qantas — as a crew scheduler, long before computers were used. He settled in Redcliffe, just a few minutes away from the ocean.

His daughter Claire was born in 1976. In time, through her involvement in speed roller skating, he became an international speed roller skating official and speedskating coach for many years. He caused her a great embarrassment as a teenager, yelling ‘Go Go Go to her with his Scottish accent. Many of his skaters went on to compete (and win) in world championships. He taught them so much more than skating.

In late 2003 he retired and spent his time playing golf and travelling. He came to visit Claire in Vancouver regularly (thanks to his Qantas entitlements he racked up a lot of carbon miles :). In 2010 he drove around Australia in a land cruiser with a friend, sleeping in their swags [small tent/sleeping bag] the entire way. He loved it so much the following year he bought a Winnebago motor home, got rid of most of his belongings, and spent the next decade driving around Australia, taking a lot of photos, fishing, golfing, meeting people and telling stories and enjoying sundowners(drinks at sunset in caravan/holiday parks). Claire had a lovely trip with him through Italy by train in 2012.

He really had the best time. It was hard for him to give that lifestyle up and move in with us in Brisbane in 2022.

‘He was a wonderful dad,’ recalls Claire and I’ll miss him every day for the rest of my life.’

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