TERRY O’Shaughnessy was regarded as an icon in Albury’s teaching fraternity.
He worked as a teacher at James Fallon, Albury and Murray high schools and was recognised for his influence on thousands of students.
When aged 78, Mr O’Shaughnessy was given a medallion in 2006 to mark 50 years as a teacher.
He died last week aged 85 and a requiem mass will be held today at St Patrick’s Church in Albury. at 10am.
A former teaching colleague at Albury High, Geoff Emerson, said Mr O’Shaughnessy was highly respected in teaching and the community.
“He was a terrific guy,” Mr Emerson said.
“He was a great mentor to me as a chemistry teacher.”
Former Albury High principal Keith Crossley said he could not speak highly enough of Mr O’Shaughnessy as a teacher.
“He was a tremendous science teacher,” Mr Crossley said.
“He was a person who got on really well with the kids.”
Mr Crossley said Mr O’Shaughnessy was a strong supporter of sport.
He had taken a senior teaching role at Murray High before Mr Crossley took over as principal at Albury in 1982.
But Mr O’Shaughnessy retained a strong affinity with Albury High, attending functions and reunions.
His grandfather, Michael O’Shaughnessy, came out from Ireland in 1890 and was a doctor at Albury hospital for many years.
His father, Sars O’Shaughnessy, was a bookmaker who helped found the Roos rugby league club and for years operated the Sars Hotel, later known as the Garrison and now Northside.
Terry O’Shaughnessy was born in Albury and lived in the city all his life apart from a few years when the family moved to Sydney and later when he was at teachers’ college.
He was a talented sportsman who became involved with many organisations including St Patrick’s and Lavington football clubs.
He played league for the Roos and had interests in tennis, table tennis, squash and cricket.
Mr O’Shaughnessy for a time headed the table tennis association, played representative cricket for Albury and coached under 14 and under 12 teams.
After retiring from full-time teaching, he spent years as a relief teacher.
“I am glad the schools still wanted me and needed me because I love teaching so much and retirement just was not for me,” he said when receiving his medallion in 2006.
“I never forget a name or a face and have taught many students who have gone on to successful careers.”
Two of his former pupils are basketballer Lauren Jackson and David Bowtell, now director of research at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne.