Teacher remembered for promoting awareness and acceptance
ADAM Bruin is remembered as a man who expanded the minds of many children, promoting acceptance, kindness and awareness.
A father to two young girls, Mr Bruin, 37, passed away suddenly in November after suffering from a brain injury following surgery to remove a brain tumour in 2014.
Former partner Tara Bruin said he was a much- loved teacher at Sunshine Beach and Noosaville state schools.
"He was the teacher that everybody wanted to be in his class,” Ms Bruin said.
"I'm a teacher as well, and I've never seen anyone get so much amazing feedback. The cards you get from parents saying 'you've changed my child's life'.
"He was very colourful, he was artistic.
"He brought this amazing, unique style of teaching. Our first teaching post was in the Torres Strait... and when we were younger we travelled the world together.
"He just absorbed everything, he brought this multiculture aspect, and he taught the students everything that he knew.”
Ms Bruin said, being an intellectual person, Mr Bruin struggled with his reduced capabilities following surgery, so he turned to music.
"Adam ran the ukulele club (at school),” she said.
"When you play the ukulele, you hold it up near your heart, so he had this beautiful way of explaining that you play it from your heart.
"He'd walk through the school, he was like the pied piper, and all the little preppies would follow him.
"He joined the Park Bench Players (a Noosa ukulele group). At the memorial, the whole group of them played ukulele songs.
"He had a student... he stood up and did a solo ukulele performance. It was a really uplifting experience.”
Facing their first Christmas without their dad, a friend of Ms Bruin set up a GoFundMe campaign for his daughters, Priya, 9, and Ada, 6. Ms Bruin said she was initially conflicted by the donations because she and Mr Bruin were separated at the time of his death, but she has accepted the gesture.
"His whole life was about our daughters. Everywhere you go, people would stop and say what an amazing father he is,” she said.
"I'm very focused that it's going to be for things the girls need that I can't provide for them.
"When your children are going through something like this, you want to give them everything.
"I don't want them to suffer any more, or miss out on anything. I'm seeing there's a gift in that my friends have done this for the girls.”
If this story has raised concerns for you, you can phone Lifeline on 131114.