The Ballarat community has lost one of its most determined and inspirational members following the death of David Ebbs on Friday last week.
A passionate volunteer throughout the community, David (his wife Jill Ebbs told The Courier he would cringe at the thought of being referred to Mr Ebbs in the paper) is being remembered by family and friends as somebody they could always rely on.
Jill, who was married to David for 32 years, said from the moment they met at Melbourne University studying chemical engineering, she knew what an amazing person he was.
"I just thought he was such a good person," she said.
"A very clever, funny and kind man. He had great values and it seemed we were just drawn to each other."
After meeting at 18, the pair married at 21 before looking to relocate to regional Victoria to start a family.
The pair moved to Ballarat in 1997 with their two children, Hugh and Chris, as David built the family's mud brick home.
Jill said David was the perfect partner to raise a family with and an amazing father to his children.
"He wanted to show them how to live life rather than tell them how to live life, which is a pretty cool thing to do," she said.
"He was the perfect person to raise children with... we made the perfect team."
David was involved in many activities and organisations across the community such as joining the Hardies Hill Fire Brigade and lecturing part-time at Federation University, however perhaps none made him happier than when he was playing tennis.
Playing a major role within both the Buninyong and District Tennis Association and Ballarat Regional Tennis Centre, David went above and beyond to assist the sport he loved.
David faced a major hurdle in January 2019 after suffering a stroke. However, fuelled by his determination, he re-learnt to walk, talk and eventually get back on the court again.
Rob Benoit, who would have a hit with David each Friday, said David's determination was inspiring.
"He just loved that he could get back out there, nothing was going to stop him," Mr Benoit said.
"I remember Jill ringing me up one day trying to talk to David about something serious, but all he could talk about was his new left-handed back-hand," he laughed.
"He was simply an amazing person... I'll never forget our friendship."
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