Mel Ensbey’s sister Kelly Brown says her farewells.
Mel Ensbey’s sister Kelly Brown says her farewells. Jacklyn Wagner

True courage from a beautiful woman

VIBRANT, courageous, loveable, fun, mischievous, strong, loud, determined, organised, competitive and beautiful.

Those were just some of the words used to describe Mel Ensbey during her funeral service at Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church at Alstonville yesterday.

Mel died last Wednesday morning, aged 28, after battling a severe form of ovarian cancer for five years.

The Alstonville woman had tried everything to fight the disease, including flying to Mexico for three weeks last year to try natural therapies not available in Australia.

Hundreds of people joined Mel's parents, Garry and Mari, and her sisters, Kelly and Allison, at the emotional service.

Brother-in-law Daniel Canu gave the eulogy, and spoke about the young woman who was “determined not to sit around at home”, despite her illness.

He said her family nickname was “Houdini” and that she was always doing something, whether it was Brownies, jazz, swimming, softball, netball or jewellery designing.

“Mel was fearless,” he said.

“There were many parties at the Ensbey household while her parents were away ... the police may have been called to some of those, but we won't mention any names.”

She was a “party girl” who loved to have a good time, including “diving naked off Missingham Bridge” at Ballina and jumping off the highest rock ledge at the Blue Pools at Angourie.

Holidays with her parents at Evans Head, breaking records on the family Wii and beating everyone at board games were some of Mel's other passions.

“You will not be forgotten,” Mr Canu said.

“Rest in peace.”

Father Frank Mulcahy said he was amazed by the number of people in the village who had “expressed their sorrow at Mel's passing”.

“We are farewelling a daughter, a sister, an aunty, a cousin, a grandchild,” he said.

“For Garry, Mari, Kelly and Allison, this is a time of grief and unhappiness.

“None of us can enter and share their sense of desolation and loss.

“But so many people in this community had come to admire and support Mel.”



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