17 January 2023

Liberal Senator Jim Molan dies, aged 72

| Chris Johnson
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New NSW Liberal Senator, Jim Molan. Photo: Ian Campbell

NSW Liberal Senator Jim Molan has died, aged 72. Photo: Ian Campbell.

Liberal Senator Jim Molan has died aged 72, following a sudden decline in health after Christmas.

He was diagnosed with cancer in 2021.

Senator Molan’s family have issued a statement saying he died peacefully in their arms on Monday.

“With profound sadness we share that, following a sudden and rapid decline in health after Christmas, Jim died peacefully on 16 January 2023 in the arms of his family,” the statement says.

“He was many things – a soldier, a pilot, an author, a volunteer firefighter, and a Senator.

“Most of all, he was an adored husband, father, grandfather and brother.

“Our loss is immeasurable, but we are comforted by our memories of a full life courageously lived, devoted to family and in service of the country he loved.

“We thank you for your thoughts and prayers, and for respecting our privacy at this difficult time.”

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The retired Australian Army Major General first became a Senator for NSW in November 2017 when the High Court ruled the Nationals’ Fiona Nash ineligible during the parliamentary eligibility crisis. He had unsuccessfully contested the 2016 federal election.

He was not reelected to the Senate at the 2019 election, but in November that year he was selected to fill a casual Senate vacancy left by Arthur Sinodinos.

Senator Molan was reelected at the 2022 election to a six-year Senate term.

He was appointed an Officer in the Order of Australia in 2000.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Defence Minister Richard Marles issued a joint statement expressing “our deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues on this difficult day”.

“Senator Molan has been a fierce advocate for the people of New South Wales in this Parliament since his election to the Senate in 2017. During that time he contributed vigorously to the national security debate, a contribution many will remember for years to come,” they said.

”Senator Molan is also remembered for his four decades of service to this country in the Australian Army.

“Having retired as a Major General in 2008, Jim’s distinguished service included deployments to Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Timor-Leste, Malaysia, Germany, the US, and Iraq.

“This was recognised in the awarding of the Distinguished Service Cross by the Australian Government and the Legion of Merit by the United States Government.

“His legacy will be remembered by Australians, including those in the Defence community.”

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Opposition Leader Peter Dutton issued a statement saying Australia had lost “a patriot, a decent and honourable man and above all and most importantly an incredible family man”.

“Whether it was on the battlefield, in the political arena, or on the media stage, Jim was admired for his discernment, leadership and unfailingly courteous manner,” Mr Dutton said.

“Whether you knew Jim or met him for the first time, he drew you in immediately with his warm and captivating quality. In turn, you always had Jim’s undivided attention.

“He always displayed generosity to the views of others, even those with whom he disagreed.”

The ACT Liberals issued their own statement of condolence, with leader Elizabeth Lee saying Senator Molan would be “dearly missed” by so many who knew him.

“He was also always a great friend to the Canberra Liberals, particularly after the last federal election,” she said.

“As a wonderful family man, our thoughts are with his wife Anne, his children, and grandchildren.”

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Tom Worthington12:12 pm 25 Jan 23

I had the pleasure of being on a couple of security discussion panels with Senator Molan, in Parliament House, and elsewhere. I may not have agreed with many of the General’s views, but was impressed by the passionate and tireless way he put them.

Capital Retro10:28 am 19 Jan 23

A great loss.

There is speculation that Tony Abbott will take over the Senate vacancy left by the passing of Jim Molan and I think Jim would approve of that.

The Liberals need someone like Abbott to save them.

Vale Jim – he will be missed

Prostate Cancer. All men over 40 should have a regular simple blood test to check their PSA level. The earlier the detection the better chance of a cure.

Vale Jim. A good man and patriot.

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