An ‘Aussie larrikin who loved to fish and play footy’, ‘carefree and spirited’ and a ‘hard worker’ – these were just some of the tributes paid to Mark ‘Tinhead’ Tiernan at a packed funeral in Byron Bay on Monday.
A long-time Byron Bay local, Mr Tiernan drowned on February 6, his 51st birthday, when he attempted to cross a flooded creek in a utility in the Lockhart area of southern NSW.
He was doing seasonal work on a farm at Boree Creek.
Mr Tiernan’s parents, Kevin and Ann Tiernan, of Suffolk Park, were on their way to visit him when they received the news of his death.
About 400 people attended the funeral held at St Finbarr’s Catholic Church.
Celebrant Father Anthony Lemon said Mark loved the land and led a nomadic life.
He said he loved fishing, was an avid reader and always had a form guide in his hand.
In a moving tribute to his son, father Kevin said Mark had friends all over Australia and overseas.
“Mark was an Aussie larrikin, he loved life, fun and friends and he was carefree and spirited,” Mr Tiernan said.
“He was down-to-earth, a dinkum Aussie and a gifted footballer.”
Brother Paul said Mark had many hobbies, but his main hobby was punting.
“He also loved to surf and to fish and enjoyed one or two ‘frothies’,” he said.
“Mark was a hard worker and dedicated and he loved the bush.
“He was famous for his dry sense of humour and wit and he had an amazing skill as a wordsmith.”
Peter Tiernan said his brother loved ‘to cut a wave at Wategos with his friend Chris Milgate’ and he was a founding member of the Byron Bay Malibu Club.
“Mark travelled overseas and in Australia and he had a number of jobs,” he said.
Mr Tiernan is survived by parents Kevin and Ann, brothers Paul, Peter and Andrew and sisters Louise and Justine.
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