Brother kept special message found in a bottle at grave

On March 23, 1967, a young schoolteacher was killed in a single vehicle accident near Westwood.

She was travelling to Emu Park from Clermont, her first teaching post since graduating teachers college, to visit family for the Easter school holidays. Mavis May had just turned 21.

Mavis May in August 1962 at Eungella
Mavis May in August 1962 at Eungella

Mavis attended Emu Park State School and Yeppoon High School then went to Kelvin Grove Teachers College. During these years, Marion Jackson was her best friend.

Mavis May and Marion Jackon in Pirates of Penzance on September 4, 1963.
Mavis May and Marion Jackon in Pirates of Penzance on September 4, 1963.

They played netball together, received the leading roles in the school production of the Pirates of Penzance and attended teachers college together. They also enjoyed holidays at Yeppoon, Emu Park, Eungella, and Mackay with Marion's Cousin John Bolck.

John Bolck in August 1962 at Eungella.
John Bolck in August 1962 at Eungella.

Mavis and John enjoyed a brief romance during this time, however John's employment took him to various states throughout Australia and overseas. John never forgot Mavis.

Sadly it wasn't until 2006 when John learned of the tragedy that claimed the life of Mavis. From southeast Queensland John and Marion travelled to Yeppoon to visit the grave of Mavis and pay their respects.

Overcome with sadness and the loss of his first love, John visited the grave several times, always taking fresh flowers with him.

On June 20, 2006, John and Marion decided to leave a message in a bottle on the grave; in hope family would discover it.

On the 20 June 2006, John Bolck and Marion Jackson decided to leave a message in a bottle on the grave of Mavis May; in hope family would discover it.
On the 20 June 2006, John Bolck and Marion Jackson decided to leave a message in a bottle on the grave of Mavis May; in hope family would discover it.

Fast forward to 2019, upon the passing of the older brother of Mavis, this letter was discovered among his many treasures.

On the 20 June 2006, John Bolck and Marion Jackson decided to leave a message in a bottle on the grave of Mavis May; in hope family would discover it.
On the 20 June 2006, John Bolck and Marion Jackson decided to leave a message in a bottle on the grave of Mavis May; in hope family would discover it.

Several attempts to reach Marion and John with the details provided in the letter were unsuccessful, until one last call finally resulted in contact with Marion. To say Marion was astonished, that after all these years someone had actually found the message in a bottle, is an understatement. Marion now lives in Prenzlau, Lockyer Valley. After a couple of hours of conversation and amazing stories of their friendship, Marion told how she had many photographs of Mavis. Photos no one in the family had ever seen.

Marion graciously shared these precious photos and stories, sending copies with notations and they have now lovingly been shared with family members.

Mavis May and Marion Jackson at Teachers College June 1, 1964
Mavis May and Marion Jackson at Teachers College June 1, 1964

This truly amazing story of friendship, love, loss and discovery, which spanned over 50 years, was found within a message in a bottle.

Yeppoon High Seniors 1963: L-R Front Row Pam Carte, Mavis May, Marion Jackson, Nada GodberL-R Middle RowScott McLellan, John Green, Graham Lederhose, Robert HayhoeL-R Back RowDavid Hower, Jeffrey Rhoder, David Goodwin
Yeppoon High Seniors 1963: L-R Front Row Pam Carte, Mavis May, Marion Jackson, Nada GodberL-R Middle RowScott McLellan, John Green, Graham Lederhose, Robert HayhoeL-R Back RowDavid Hower, Jeffrey Rhoder, David Goodwin