A HAUNTING rendition of Happy Birthday rang out across Cheshunt on Saturday.
Loss gripped the voices of the 50 people at a rotunda next to the Cheshunt hall.
Devin Carracher would have turned 30 on Thursday.
His father, John, saluted him, raising his can — “happy birthday big fella,” he said.
With Devin’s mum, Fran, and older sister Jane, they remembered their 203-centimetre loveable Devin by unveiling a memorial.
Relatives built a table out of redgum under the rotunda in Cheshunt’s main street.
The Wangaratta man had an epileptic seizure during a King River fishing trip in September.
Laughter and tears peppered the reading of Jimmy D Moore’s poem Why I Fish.
“If as they say, trout fishing is good for the soul, surely Heaven’s streams will always run cold,” the poem read.
John, Fran and Jane said the memorial was a place of peace away from a cemetery for family and friends.
Devin represented Australia in intellectually disabled basketball and was a ruckman for Longwood.
John said basketball had opened Devin’s world after he turned 18 and he had represented his state and country.
His basketball coach and several state teammates travelled to Cheshunt for the memorial.
Fran said the day was a celebration of “what Devin achieved in his life and what he’s still achieving”.