World War II spy, Melbourne Olympics interpreter, songwriter and Border Mail journalist.
Joan Fairbridge was all those things over a life that ended on Tuesday at the age of 99.
Her two children, sons David and John, said their mother kept living independently in West Albury.
"She was still writing right up to the end, she was scribbling ideas for poems and stories and you could hold a conversation in French with her right up to the final days," John said.
A funeral service is expected to be held at Howlong cemetery next week.
One of eight children, Mrs Fairbridge was born Joan Duff in Melbourne in 1920 and attended Star of the Sea Catholic girls college.
Having dabbled in journalism with The Truth newspaper, the then Miss Duff wanted to contribute to the World War II cause and fell into a job in intelligence.
"It was a mystery to me how l came to be selected and in fact it still is, although l now realise from reading some accounts that those were desperate times and there was an alarming shortage of trained people," she told Albury and District Historical Society members in 2017.
From the late 1940s to the mid-1950s she travelled about Europe, honing her French, and returning to Australia in time to be an interpreter in the press office of the Melbourne Olympics.
In 1957 Miss Duff wed Neil Fairbridge, a farmer at Deniliquin who was a bomber pilot in the war and received a Distinguished Flying Cross.
The couple and their young sons moved to manage a property north of Howlong in 1967.
IN OTHER NEWS:
Mrs Fairbridge resumed her journalism career with The Border Mail, with a focus on feature articles.
Her songwriting talents saw her pen Ticket to Nowhere, a work written for Aboriginal musician Jimmy Ridgeway before also being performed by Indigenous country singer Roger Knox, known as the Black Elvis.
Mrs Fairbridge's lyrics included "gotta a ticket to nowhere issued to my race, one-way ticket to nowhere, got no town or any place".
Mrs Fairbridge is survived her sons, two grandsons and two grand-daughters.
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