The Miner received a letter to the editor this week from Ric Welsby in England hoping to get in touch with Bill Sullivan, who he thought was living in Kalgoorlie.
The pair hadn’t seen each other for 20 years since their families departed Lae in Papua New Guinea for security reasons. They had both lived there for seven years.
Ric had heard a rumor that Bill was in Kalgoorlie, and thought a letter in the local paper might establish the fact.
I happen to know Bill, because he occasionally writes letters to the editor himself and he runs the student accommodation for the WA School of Mines.
So instead of printing the letter I copied the email to Bill. He was ecstatic. Both families have been trying to re-establish contact for two decades without success.
There’s a great photo on today’s front page of a beaming Bill Sullivan and I’ve had messages of thanks from him and Ric. As I told them, it was a real pleasure to assist. It’s one of the unsung roles of a newspaper to build networks for individuals and organisations.