G5 02 Ronald Grose Sullivan

Ronald Grose Sullivan was a great grandson of Timothy Sullivan through his grandfather Samuel Grose Sullivan and his father Ernest Sullivan.


Ronald Grose Sullivan, the oldest of the four sons of Ernest Sullivan and wife Merva (nee Broadbent), was born in Broken Hill in 1919.


He completed all his schooling  and grew up in Broken Hill. He became  a passionate student of the violin.

He won a scholarship to Teachers College in Sydney but withdrew part of the way through as he feared being posted to a country town where he would be unable to pursue his musical interests. His desire at that time was to become a professional violinist.

Photo courtesy of Mrs R Sullivan

Ron enlisted in the RAAF (Service Number 60156) in Sydney on 22/07/1941. The 1943 electoral roll has Ronald Grose Sullivan, fitter, residing at 81 Wigram Rd, WestSydney. Subsequently he served at the Tocumwal base in Victoria (where his brother Geoff also served) and was discharged on 13/12/1945 with the rank of Leading Aircraftman, No 1 Flying Boat Repair Depot.

During his time at Tocumwal he met Shepparton girl Rosina Simpson Burgess at a dance in Numurkah which in due course led to a breakdown in Ron’s primary relationship with his violin and his subsequent marriage to Rosina in the Shepparton Methodist Church in 1944.


After the war Rosina persuaded Ron to resume his teacher training which he did at Melbourne University. He then pursued a teaching career within the Victorian secondary school system with positions including Brighton, Highett and Latrobe secondary schools where he taught music, French and mathematics. He is remembered as being highly intelligent, kindly, caring and with a great sense of humour.


 Ron and Rosina had four children. Rhonda Jeanette Sullivan was born in 1946, followed by Judith Paula Sullivan in 1949. First son David Ronald Burgess Sullivan was born in 1955, and finally Robin Noel Sullivan in 1960.

Family snapshot taken circa 2000.
Photo courtesy Mrs R Sullivan

In 1954 Ron and Rosina at were living at 220 South Road, Brighton, and in time the family moved to 46 Beach Rd Hampton which became their long term home for around 25 years.Ron and Rosina were active members of their local Anglican church in Thomas St Hampton where they both sang in the choir.

Ron maintained his interest in his violin, and played in the 50 piece Victorian Concert Orchestra with weekly rehearsals and performances all over Victoria. He was also first violin in the Sandringham Orchestra. The violin even accompanied Ron and Rosina on two around the world trips.

Ron was also interested in sports including golf, cricket, tennis and Australian Rules Football, where he became a passionate supporter of the Melbourne Football Club, and had the great enjoyment of experiencing the Demon’s glory days in the 1950s

Ron died in 2004 aged 85.