LES Dickinson is being remembered as a Ballarat retail pioneer who gave his family confidence to be whoever they wanted to be.
Mr Dickinson died at his Ballarat home on Saturday night, aged 79, after a battle with a brain tumour.
While his family, including his wife Trudie, his six children Les, Eugene, Louisa, Juliana, Paul and Christina and 10 grandchildren will remember him as a larger-than-life character who lived life to the full, in Ballarat he will be remembered for changing the face of pharmacy in this city.
A St Patrick's College graduate when he was just 16, Mr Dickinson became the owner of the Bridge Street pharmacy which was the first 9am-9pm pharmacy operation in this city.
His daughter, and current Wendouree MP Juliana Addison, said his approach to the pharmacy profession showed his caring spirit and it revolutionised the industry in this city.
"It was incredibly pioneering to go on from November 1, 1978 as a 9am-9pm," she said.
"I was talking to Christine Mooney, one of his most important staff members, and she was recalling the time they went on a secret mission to Geelong to Jim Green Pharmacy to find out how it works. It was something that was so new in Ballarat.
"At that point everything was closed and it very much opened up an important healthcare service in this town apart from going to emergency at the hospital."
In a recent podcast with St Patrick's College, Mr Dickinson spoke about his commitment to the pharmacy profession and how at one stage he worked 500 days straight.
"The typical week for me was 9am-9pm on Monday, 9am-6pm Tuesday to Thursday, 9am-9pm Friday and 9am-1pm Saturday and Sunday," he said.
Mr Dickinson also held community roles as the president of Apex Ballarat, he was a board member of Centacare and the McCallum Foundation and was also a life member of Ballarat Wine and Food.
Ms Addison said she felt blessed to have had a father who encouraged all his children to be who they were.
"Dad was a larger-than-life character, he lived a really full life," she said.
"He travelled to over 100 countries, and was always keen to learn more about different people and cultures. His friends and family were the most important to him and nothing gave him more joy than to open up his house to friends and family.
"There were six of us kids - three boys and three girls - and we were so strongly encouraged to be independent, hard-working women.
"He was a staunch believer that girls needed to be given the same opportunities the boys had."