Two weeks ago, a young apprentice refrigeration mechanic from Kurri Kurri walked into the Maitland Mercury’s office in High Street.
He was here to be interviewed and to have his photograph taken – and it was the fridge in the paper’s lunch room that was used as the prop for the photo.
The 21-year-old was in good spirits.
And he had every reason to be – he was about to
compete in the National World Skills Competition in Melbourne and, with any luck, progress to compete in Germany.
There was much banter, good humour and puns
aplenty as he joked that all he’d have to do is “keep cool” in order to win through and make his dream come true.
In the media industry, where good news stories are all too few, Matt Zambrowski brightened the lives of all who came in contact with him and no doubt our readers who would later read his story in the paper.
Today, Matt Zambrowski is dead.
Matt died when his Honda slammed head-on into a B-Double at Stockrington on Friday, leaving behind his distraught family, girlfriend, work colleagues and friends.
At times like these, it is difficult to understand why a lovely young man with such a bright future ahead of him has been taken from our midst.
Kurri Kurri and the wider community are indeed poorer for his loss.
There are many lessons to be learnt from Matt’s life and death. Work hard, strive to win and the world will be your oyster.
And never take life for granted. Our lives, and those of our loved ones, can be lost in one terrible instant.