Statement regarding the death of Michael Chamberlain
17th January 2017
“I have known Michael Chamberlain since the early 1990s, so it was with great sadness that I learned of his passing on Monday night.
“Beyond all the highs and lows of the Azaria mystery which we know about, Michael was a good community leader and a good friend to many people. I’m pleased to say that I shared a great friendship with him.
“Those who knew him know that Michael was a very complicated man who was quite driven and very thoughtful. He made very considered evaluations of how he saw the world locally, nationally and internationally. His interests were broad and he was always insightful.
“He never held back if he had an opinion on something, and he certainly let me know where I was wrong over the years. He had complex thoughts on politics and was quite conservative in his political views, but we got on very well and I often benefited from his advice.
“Michael never hid from the notoriety which came from the disappearance of Azaria, but he rarely spoke about it to me and he didn’t let it define him. He defined himself as a good community leader who worked hard for his community and his family.
“Clearly, Azaria’s disappearance was a big part of what motivated him. It would have broken many a lesser person than Michael Chamberlain. Everyone had an opinion or suspicion about the Chamberlains and what they went through, but those who knew him in the decades following were well above that because he put it all behind him and carried on with his community efforts.
“Michael was a man of great complexity and intelligence. He was a wonderful family man who cared for his wife and children. My thoughts and best wishes are with them.”