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Dom Frawley – Author Talk – Stories behind the storyteller

Saturday July 8, 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm
Port Macquarie Library
32 Grant St
Port Macquarie, New South Wales 2444 Australia

Please join Dr Dominic Frawley and Leanne on Saturday 8th July at 1.30pm for an inspiring conversation based on Malachy’s story.

Dom Frawley lives on the New South Wales south coast. Dom’s professional life as a GP has been diverse and enjoyable, incorporating interests in Indigenous Health, Youth Health, Parenting, Refugees, Health Education and Suicide Prevention over more than 25 years. Dom has a keen interest in social justice, and the plight of underdogs.

Dom’s life work is a type of authorship – retelling complex stories to find hope for a way forward. He tries to bring clarity to the personal challenges people face, whether that is transforming sickness into health, uncovering issues of justice, or as in this story unmasking the reality of people’s experience. Dom was raised in Sydney, the product of an English mother, with Royal Navy and Spy service background, and an Australian father who sprung out of rural Queensland to become an eminent surgeon. Philosophy and Cricket are Dom’s favourite hobbies.

Dom Is married to Maggie, with whom he has sought to make adventure a core element of his life experience. The two of them dropped out to van their way around Australia both before and after having children, and later dragged four school aged children off to live in Ireland. Dom’s fourth child, Malachy inspired his parents to become involved with HeartKids, the peak charity for children with heart disease. Dom served as the inaugural Chair of HeartKids Australia. This period coincided with huge growth in the HeartKids movement.

On Australia Day 2011 Dom was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM)

In 2014 Dom received an Honorary Life Membership of HeartKids NSW.

MALACHY

On 1st March 1999, Dom Frawley was a rural general practitioner, providing medical care to a few hundred families through a small cottage practice. He and his wife Maggie were due to deliver their fourth child any day. Dom worked daily with people at their most vulnerable: sick, powerless, and often fearful or distressed. His job was to help carry them through. By nightfall on 2nd March, Dom and Maggie were the ones needing

help. Malachy, their newborn child was critically ill, flown by helicopter to intensive care in Sydney. The baby’s life rested in the hands of Dom’s former colleagues. Malachy had a major heart defect, making him a ‘blue baby’. His family were forced to experience the medical system from the patient side, walking with Malachy in a prolonged struggle with severe disability. Fear for the future stalked enjoyment of the present. Through Malachy Dom takes you on his slow path to equilibrium. Drawing on Maggie’s love, a passion for philosophy and innate optimism, Dom charts the development of a deep father-son bond.

When Malachy died, life changed again. Dom guides the reader through a philosophical and uplifting account of his family’s struggle through life’s irresistible final challenge. Malachy is a mindful exploration of the bond of love between a parent and child. It is a reminder of how treasured and important all children are. It is also close study of living on with the agony of loss. Malachy touches what it means to love and be loved, to stare down hostile fate with a sense of humour, and to embrace life with courage and resilience.

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