Family pays tribute to father with ‘heart of gold’
A FAMILY torn apart by the sudden and shocking death of Clinton Albert Thompson has honoured the life of their son, brother, father and friend.
Clinton was killed in a tragic crash on Chinchilla Tara Rd, after the car he was a passenger in with his lifelong friend, Casey Porter and three others, collided with a tree.
In a eulogy to her big brother, Teresa Doyle said there wasn't a day that went by that Clinton wasn't there by her side to protect her.
"There wasn't really a day when I didn't have him in my life, to protect me, help me, and to laugh with me along the way," she said.
"He'd give you the shirt off of his back, he truly had a heart of gold."
"Clinton was a pretty happy go lucky guy, always laughing or giggling away… his laugh is in my head now - he did what he wanted to do and never hurt anyone in the process."
The year 2008 was a monumental time for Clinton (affectionately known as Cliny), Ms Doyle said he was over the moon when he found out he was going to have a baby girl.
"When he was 24 Clinton was so excited to tell us all he was going to be a dad to a beautiful baby girl, that was his first born," she said.
"Then again with his second and third in 2010 and 2011, then in 2015 with last child, his little boy.
"Each time was just like the first as he was so happy and excited that you couldn't wipe the smile off of his face. You couldn't ruin his day even if you tried."
Growing up in Tara, Ms Doyle said her big brother was a country boy through and through, and never let life hold him back from what he wanted to achieve.
"He had so many things he wanted to do, to which he tried them all; from being a part of the army cadets, cattle work or working at the paint and panel, to then be swinging an axe, sitting around a camp fire and sleeping under the stars," she said.
Ms Doyle said Cliny always had a passion for cars.
"He loved working on them but would hate it when something went wrong - just as most of us would," she said.
"I know he would be one of the first people I'd call if there were something wrong with a car, and he would drop whatever he was doing for himself to help anyone out, whether it be figuring out the problem over the phone or coming to the rescue while someone was broken down."
In 2017, Clinton was critically injured after being involved in a serious car accident, Ms Doyle said his strength and determination pulled him through - proving medical specialists wrong and defying all odds.
"We were told he may not survive but numerous times he left specialists, doctors and nurses speechless with his will to live and his strength to stay with us," she said.
"He was a walking talking miracle in the end having come so damn far, and in that I think there were lessons to be learned that I witnessed first-hand and that is; you grow through what you go through and to love and to laugh when you can and to never take life all too seriously."
A couple of weeks before the fatal accident on Chinchilla Tara Rd, Ms Doyle remembers convincing Clinton to stay with her in Chinchilla when he was just supposed to be stopping by.
One of her last memories of her big brother will be his humour, tenacity, and defiance to rules - the rebellious spirit which governed most of his life.
"We were having a cuppa talking with each other when Cliny told us how he was riding his push bike around the street and came around a corner to ride smack bang into a coppa, Clintons infectious giggle came out and we all busted out laughing," she said.
"After they got up and dusted themselves off, without time to do anything else Cliny hit the police officer up saying, 'have you found my bike yet?'
"The officer replied with, 'not yet' and Clinton said, 'well when are you going to start doing your job?'
"We just couldn't stop laughing, it was just the way he explained it and laughed about it that made it a stand out memory without witnessing it happen ourselves."
One of 13 children across two families, Clinton Albert Thompson was born at the Townsville Hospital on November 28, 1983, to Robin Thompson and Edmond Grant, and later a son to John Doyle who loved him as if he was his own.
A letter from Robin Thompson to her son:
The first thing I think of when I think of you is your beautiful smile.
The second would be your adorable laugh.
I could go on and on but the list would never end.
When I think of the short time that we've been together and of all the happy memories we've already shared it amazes me to no end and I know that we were meant to be together.
I look at you and see overflowing love, hope and joy as well as charm, strength, happiness and dignity.
With all of these wonderful qualities, it's no wonder I love you so.
My love is like a song that goes on and on forever, fly high my angel.
Love always, Mum.
The family would like to extend their deepest thanks to all the emergency services that attended the crash site on Chinchilla Tara Rd, on May 21.