It is with great sadness that we report the passing of Steve ‘Shifty’ Old, a long-time member of the CYCA, until serious illness took control. Steve passed away on 2 August in an Oberon nursing home at the age of 79.
Shifty is well-known to Club Members and raced offshore for many years on larger boats. He worked as a cameraman and sound technician for ABC and SBS which led him to be in Newport, Rhode Island, working for ABC when Australia won the America’s Cup. He brought that film and lots of memorabilia back to Australia and 20 years later, organised along with other Members to host a ‘surprise’ 20th anniversary reunion in September 2003. He surprised everyone who attended, as they could not tell people up front, otherwise the Club would have been inundated.
Notable members of the campaign attended including Alan Bond who made the journey from Perth, along with other Cup luminaries including, Sir James Hardy, Syd Fischer, Hugh Treharne and others. It was a night those of us who attended, will never forget, including John Messenger, who was Commodore at the time and let in on the secret along with Michael Cranitch.
Shifty’s involvement also included filming the CYCA winter series for years and it kept competitors glued to the screen after racing each weekend. This assistance did not stop there with his services being utalised at the Club many times. Due to his technical expertise, he was also tasked with recovering and digitising all of the Club’s archives from 1945’s onwards – a big job.
- Notes from Di Pearson