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All round good guy; Lithgow Table Tennis Association Celebrates the Life of Roy Barlow | Lithgow Mercury

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A tragedy hit the tight-knit Lithgow Table Tennis Association for a second time this year with the recent death of popular member Roy Barlow in a canyoning accident. This comes after top player Michael Wood passed away in January after a short illness. Roy Barlow was the typical ‘good guy’. Nothing was ever too difficult or too much trouble, and it was rare that he didn’t have a smile on his face. Roy had a passion for life and the mysteries it hid and the challenges it presented. He tried his best to find and overcome them, probably squeezing three lifetimes of experiences into one. After joining the association in mid-2012, Roy was the friendliest and most enthusiastic member from the start. He enjoyed the game of table tennis and the fun, fitness and friendship it brought. More often than not, new and inexperienced players were welcomed to the club first by Roy, who made it his personal mission to help them improve their skills. During the competition, he cheered on everyone, especially the less talented players, and often drew the anger, albeit good-natured, from his teammates when he barracked for the opposition. In addition to the Wednesday-evening league, Roy started a round-robin event on Monday-evening, giving players the opportunity to hone their games in a less competitive environment. During his time at the club, Roy held many positions, including vice president and league handicapped, and was the current treasurer. Most nights he was the first to arrive to open the hall and the last to leave. He was very active in promoting the club and table tennis in general. He ran the Association’s Facebook page, made flyers for bulletin boards, and offered old tables to various schools to spark interest. READ MORE: Roy was also the self-proclaimed ‘Mr. Fixit’, fixing lights and other minor glitches in the hall. He completed a course to become the COVID-19 safety officer, setting up hand sanitizing stations and organizing disinfectants and cleaning equipment to sanitize the tables and floors after play. Without his efforts in this area, the association could not have returned to play as quickly. Outside the tables, Roy brought together a small group of players who regularly ate meals and evenings. Usually meals were at Roy’s house, while Roy cooked, and where he also welcomed foreign travelers as boarders. He enjoyed cycling, bushwalking and canyoning, as well as countless other ‘adventure’ sports, making table tennis probably his most sedate pastime. The association has begun plans to name two perpetual awards in honor of both Roy Barlow and Michael Wood. A Player Player Award, voted on by members, will bear Roy’s name. Michael Wood will be remembered with a prize for the player with the highest win rate during the year. Roy Barlow will be sorely missed and will always be remembered by everyone who knew him, especially his Lithgow Table Tennis family. Contributed using information from various LTTA members. If you would like to contribute an obituary, please email us.

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