The Border Mail looks back in tribute on some of the community, business and sporting contributors who left us during a most uncommon year.
Joe Wooding's first passion was cricket, but the Order of Australia Medal recipient also served football, orchid and history groups.
A man who believed in doing things properly, "Joe was always very switched on, a step ahead of most and understood the finer points of the game".
July brought the death of New City Cricket Club's last foundation member Harold Hunter, aged 91.
He helped get the club off the ground in 1956-57 and the Phoenix's Club Person of the Year is still named in his honour.
The ultimate Henty Man, Kevin Bourke, was a life member of the town's bowls and football clubs and with wife Therese won six mixed bowls pairs titles together between 1987 and 1994.
A humble man, he was "quietly chuffed" that a green was named in his honour.
Ovens and Murray Football Netball League Hall of Famer Neil Davis, a successful Yarrawonga player and coach, was described as a fantastic team person and "O & M royalty".
"He had an ability to galvanize and make everyone feel important, whether you were a seasoned player or a young player starting off," one footballer recalled.
Last month a long guard of honour lined North Albury's Bunton Park to honour Peter Westland, an undisputed star on the football field and larger than life character off the ground.
Known as Wizard, the captain and top goal kicker for the Hoppers' against the odds, rags to riches, 1984 premiership died aged 67.
Albury Football Netball Club's Keith 'Chum' Ried gave the Tigers more than 70 years' service in numerous roles including groundsman and property steward.
"When it was time for sport, he'd be there," a grandchild said at his September funeral.
Footballer Wayne Edwards, who died in February aged 58, had a knack of making mates wherever he went.
Many former teammates at North Albury, Jerilderie, Osborne, Rand, Walbundrie and Border-Walwa have a tale or two to tell about the silky left-footer.
Wodonga Raiders' unofficial mascot Peter 'Patto' Pattenden also made an impression, the guitar-playing Viking a regular at Birallee Park for more than a decade before his death after a short illness aged 59.
And friends were shocked when former Corowa-Rutherglen star and 2008 Morris Medal winner Jake Ryan, 39, died while holidaying in Italy in October.
S.M. Abikhair General Draper, Boots & Shoes opened in 1928 and operated for seven decades, with the merchandise and stock later forming part of an exhibition after it closed in the mid-1990s.
Longtime Wodonga menswear retailer Clarrie Ewart, 92, died in May, having worked alongside his older brother Jeff, also deceased, at Ewart Brothers for decades.
"A suit, a belt, a joke, a fishy story or a cuppa from the billy which was always on the boil, all could be found at Ewart Brothers - if only all the fish we talked about in the shop had been caught," Mr Ewart once said.
Brian Unthank was a dominant force in livestock and real estate sales across the region for more than six decades and his loved ones continue his legacy.
His daughter Susan says "he worked 24/7, he was an agent through and through, but also a true family man".
Just before Christmas property developerJohn Colquhoun, 91, died at Beechworth after a career that helped reshape Albury.
A person who always saw the positive in any opportunity, he was involved in projects such as building the Lavington Coles retail hub, converting a CBD woolstore for the Australian Tax Office and redeveloping Young Street land for a Bunnings centre.
Jamie Drummond, 64, who died in a June car crash, formed Drummond Motor Sport in 1985, focusing on designing and making shock absorbers for rally cars that competed at the top level around the world.
A pioneer of his industry, Mr Drummond once exported to 30 countries from his Wodonga factory.
Cr Goldman operated a large earth moving and civil construction business from his base at Burramine near Yarrawonga.
IN OTHER NEWS:
Police officers formed a guard of honour in Wodonga to acknowledge Dr John Moran, a police medical officer for about 30 years.
The respected GP was a former chairman and board member of the Wodonga Regional Health Service and also served six years on the cross-border Albury Wodonga Health board of management.
Another guard of honour took place in August as loved ones said goodbye to "a good cop and even better bloke" Garry Corcoran.
The retired Wodonga senior sergeant cared for everyone at the station and provided valued guidance to many, whether he realised it or not.
Neville Frichot gave 55 years' service to the Country Fire Authority, mainly with the Wodonga brigade, and everyone remembered his hearty laugh.
"Loved being involved with the community and absolutely loved the fire brigade," his wife Lyn said.
Rae Metry, who died of cancer in May, couldn't stand chooks in large numbers, but did not let that stop her supporting her husband of 36 years, Braham, a prolific poultry breeder and well-known auctioneer.
"Broughty's idea was if you are going to do it, you do it properly," a friend observed.
Long before she was a rural stalwart, Wahgunyah's Maggie Fitzgibbon ruled British stages and television screens. The actor and singer grabbed life with both hands, challenging people and always embracing change.
Trailblazer Olgamary Savage hosted the first show broadcast on Albury AMV4 in 1964 and then returned to television in the 1980s on Channel 7.
The work of photographer Rod Hardinge will continue to be seen for years in the homes of numerous Border families.
The 72-year-old shot thousands of weddings during a decades-long career covering news, fine art and real estate photography.
Benambra horseman Ken Connley's legacy has been captured on film, with the high country legend riding for movies like The Man From Snowy River.
"He was always willing to share his high country with those who were willing to have a go," Victorian Parliament heard after the 74-year-old's death.
Retired mechanic Gerry Blom brought Border history to the wider world, but few knew he was behind the Disappearing Albury Wodonga Region Facebook page that he set up in 2012.
The positive impression courier Manu Godward made as she dropped off parcels around Albury became obvious in the messages sent to her family.
"She didn't just deliver freight to our office, she delivered humanity every day," was one example.
And the death of Garry 'Snowy' Herron at the age of 71 highlighted what life could bring - the Albury resident spent decades as a homeless alcoholic before helping create the Carevan service that provides meals for people in need.
These are far from the only deaths in our region during 2020, with some long lives ending in peace and others cut tragically short.
Our thoughts are with all who mourn and our hope is that memories can bring comfort.
- Funeral with a difference thanks to coronavirus
- Police constable honoured with a salute as procession crosses border
- Daughter prevented from farewelling her dying mum
- The gaping grief of suicide, a son's last words to his father
- Tributes and support for Jay Turner's loved ones after crash tragedy
- A beautiful son: Community supports family after Christmas Day tragedy
- Funeral for Wodonga truck driver Garry Scott after Melbourne Road crash
- A fitting goodbye for everyone's best mate
- Boree Creek crash victim remembered for enriching the community
- Town in mourning for Jezza
- Missed and loved: 28-year-old killed in Howlong machinery accident
- Teacher mourned following fatal accident at Mount Stanley
- Death of Wodonga mum still under investigation
- Tributes for couple who died in Howlong car crash
- Parents remember beautiful little boy Lincoln and thank community