Source: Prime Minister of Australia
It is with great sadness that we mourn the passing of Major General the Honourable Michael Jeffery.
Major General Jeffery will be remembered as a brave soldier, a dedicated Governor and Governor-General, and a passionate defender of the causes he believed in.
Major General Jeffery was a great Australian who served Australia throughout his adult life. He was a remarkable man who I am proud to call a friend.
His contribution to public service began at age 16 when he arrived at the Royal Military College, Duntroon, where he graduated in Infantry. His military career took him to Malaya, Papua New Guinea, Borneo and Vietnam. It was during his tour of Vietnam that he was awarded the Military Cross.
His leadership and camaraderie allowed him to rise through the ranks, being made commanding officer of the Special Air Service Regiment (SAS), Major General and finally Assistant Chief of the General Staff Materiel.
From 1993, Major General Jeffery served as Western Australia’s 27th Governor.
Ten years later, he was sworn in as Australia’s 24th Governor-General; an office he fulfilled with distinction and honour.
In retirement, as Australia’s first National Soils Advocate, he was an ardent advocate of conserving and improving the land.
Major General Jeffery left an impressive legacy. He will be remembered both for his many achievements, and as a man of faith, integrity, decency and warmth.
On behalf of the Australian people, I express my deep gratitude for one of Australia’s finest leaders and most devoted servants.
Jenny and I offer our heartfelt condolences to his beloved wife Marlena, to their children and extended family.