Australia mourns loss of Archie Roach

1 August 2022

Written by: Jackson Mansell

Roach was remembered for his music and activism.

We advise Indigenous Australian readers that images and the names of deceased people appear in this article. Permission has been given by Archie Roach’s family for his image and name to be shared.

Tributes are flowing after Aboriginal Australian musician and activist Archie Roach passed away peacefully on Saturday, aged 66.

A proud Gunditjmara (Kirrae Whurrong/Djab Wurrung), Bundjalung Senior Elder, songman and storyteller, Roach was known for his 1990 song ‘Took the Children Away’, which became an anthem for the stolen generations.

The sons of Roach, Amos and Eban, released a statement on behalf of the family, saying that they are “heartbroken” about his passing.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese took to Twitter, expressing his mourning for the passing of a “prolific national truth-teller”.

Victorian Greens Senator and Gunnai Gunditjmara and Djab Wurrung woman Lidia Thorpe thanked Roach for “validating the trauma” experienced by Aboriginal communities since colonisation.

Former Olympic gold medallist and Kuku Yalanji woman Cathy Freeman said that she will remember Roach as a “courageous story teller and [a] remarkable musician”.

A private ceremony will be held in his honour.

 

PHOTO: Archie Roach by Warren Smart is available HERE and used under a Creative Commons licence. This photo has not been modified.