Paris, 2022-08-11 07:55:31. Olivia Newton-John: Australian state monument in the works
Victorian Prime Minister Dan Andrews announced Thursday that singer Olivia Newton-John, who died on Monday in the United States, will receive an official memorial service in Australia.
In a tweet on Twitter, Andrews said he had spoken with Newton-John’s family and they had accepted an official party offer. “It would be more of a concert than a funeral — fitting for a Victorian who lived such a rich and generous life,” Andrews said. Details have not yet been finalized.
Totti Goldsmith, Newton-John’s niece, told CNN affiliate CNN, she felt the Australian people wanted Newton-John to have a state funeral. “I think Australia needs him,” Goldsmith said, sobbing. “She is very likable.”
Born in the United Kingdom, Newton-John moved to Australia at the age of five and quickly became one of the country’s most famous celebrities.
Several Australian landmarks, including the Sydney Opera House, Perth’s Optus Stadium and Melbourne’s Flinders Street railway station, were lit up in pink this week in memory of the artist who died on her Southern California farm at the age of 73.
Andrews said lighting the buildings pink was a gesture “to remember Olivia Newton-John, and her tremendous contribution to cancer awareness, research and treatment.”
Newton-John has survived two bouts of breast cancer, one in the early 1990s and one in 2017. In September 2018 she revealed that she was battling cancer again, this time at the base of her spine.
Despite her struggles, Newton-John maintained a positive outlook.
She wrote on the website of the Olivia Newton-John Cancer, Wellness and Research Center, which opened in Melbourne in 2012.
“With the number of people suffering from cancer increasing every day, I believe we are in a world desperate for a cure, and I am committed to doing everything I can to help.”
After her death, the organization said in a statement that “Newton-John’s generous support and gift have provided hope and changed the lives of thousands of cancer patients.”
Newton-John’s death sparked a wave of grief from fans who followed her path from “Grease” to her Las Vegas concert, while those who worked with her over the years exchanged memories and condolences on social media.
The memorial service for Newton John will be the second official farewell given to an Australian singer this month. The Victorian government is organizing a state funeral for Judith Durham, lead singer of The Seekers, who died on August 5 at the age of 79.
I am so pleased that Olivia Newtown John’s family has accepted our offer of an official memorial service.
We are working with Olivia’s family on the details, but it will be more of a concert than a funeral – befitting a Victorian who lived such a rich and generous life.
– Dan Andrews (@DanielAndrewsMP) August 11, 2022
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