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Mourners farewell 'Dr June'

More than 1000 mourners gathered to honour
More than 1000 mourners gathered to honour "Dr June" and celebrate her life and dedication to charity work. Warren Lynam/184722
JUNE Canavan's compassion for people and her lifelong journey of learning were celebrated today, as the Sunshine Coast farewelled one of its finest.

On August June 11 the Maroochydore doctor who specialised in sports medicine was killed, along with her close friend Keith Gracie, when the plane taking them to the Kokoda trail in Papua New Guinea crashed. Thirteen people died in the crash.

Today more than 1000 mourners gathered to honour "Dr June", and celebrate her life and dedication to charity work.

High-profile guests at the service included world champion tri-athlete Emma Snowsill, cricketer Ashley Knoffke, and high-profile swimming coach, Scott Volkers, all of whom had developed close personal and professional relationships with her.

Snowsill said the ability of "Dr June" to listen, decipher and diagnose the body and the mind was amazing.

And she always had time to see people, she said.

"I would ask her, 'Do you ever sleep?'" Snowsill said.

"She would chuckle and say, 'I just don't want to miss anything in life'.

"I'vebeen thankful of the injuries I've had in my career because it's meantI've got to spend more time with Dr June," Snowsill said.

June had travelled PNG to complete the Kokoda trail as part of her Klocking up the Ks campaign to raise money to build a school for children in Tanzania.

Queensland Academy of Sport head Scott Volkers told mourners thatwithout Dr Canavan, a lot of Queensland success stories may never havebeen told.

"Due to her great work, Queensland has been blessed with a lot of great athletes," he said.

"Who else would want to talk to sick, self-sorry paranoid-filled athletes all day and still enjoy it?"

Atthe Beijing Olympics she was determined to climb the Great Wall ofChina but little did those around her know she was due to have openheart surgery just days later, Mr Volkers said when describing her.

Former Queensland cricketer Ashley Noffke remembered meeting Dr Canavan at the age of 12 when he had his first sports injury.

"She was always so sincere and empathised because she was once a first class athlete herself," he told mourners.

Noffkesaid if he had to describe her in terms of athletes, he would say shewas the "Tiger Woods, Don Bradman and Ian Thorpe" of her profession.

Friends and family vowed they would keep June's legacy alive and see the project through.

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