By Paula Hammond
Colin Ronald Hammond was born on the 22nd of March, 1964 in Carlton, Victoria. His father’s name was Ronald Ernest Hammond and his mother’s name was Patricia Maureen O’Toole. There were five children – Colin, his 3 sisters and 1 brother.
Colin’s childhood was not a very happy one. Home life was very tough for him and sadly, from the age of 13, he was asked to leave home by his father. Even though his mother wanted him to stay, he was obliged to leave the family home where they lived in Broadmeadows.
Colin travelled extensively around Australia, and he would sleep in train stations, or wherever he could ‘til he found rental accommodation.
At the age of 20, Colin became friends with people from the Baptist Church, Pentecostal Church, and Adventist Church. He began to study the Bible and the writings of Ellen G. White. Through his study he became aware of the Sabbath and that this was the day of rest given by God. He began to frequent the Seventh Day Adventist Reform Movement in 1990. He was baptised in Adelaide at the Camp meeting by Br. John Ciric on the 11th of April, 1993. He then returned to Melbourne and continued to attend the Keilor Park Church. He found employment with some Romanian brethren in Melbourne on commercial projects on educational facilities.
Colin began to get to know the brothers and sisters of the Keilor Park Church – especially George Cristea. It was through George Cristea that Colin was introduced to me. In February 1995, Colin travelled to Romania. After a whirlwind romance, we made our application to get married. On the 20th of April, 1995, we became husband and wife. In October, we departed Romania for Australia.
Our first port of call was Sydney. It was December and we attended the Annual Conference and stayed with Colin’s friends – Patricia & Will. After the Conference, we travelled to Melbourne. We lived in Essendon for one year and during this time our first child – Lael Thomas Hammond – was born. The year was 1997. After one year we moved to Melton. Two years later our second child – Joyce Elena Faith Hammond was born. Another two years went by and we moved yet again. This time it was to Ballarat and in 2001 our youngest – Jeremiah Andrew Hammond was born.
Every day Colin studied the Sabbath School lessons and read Bible stories to our children. When they grew bigger, they would read the Bible themselves.
Colin, my dear husband, was a devoted student of the Bible – the Word of God. Colin was a very good and faithful man. Many of our friends would contact him to ask him questions which he would answer. Night after night we would study the Sabbath School Lesson from 6:30pm. We would read the verses from the Bible in both English and Romanian. This was a pleasant experience for our family.
Colin was a good husband, indulgent and a giver of many gifts to me. He was strong and very special and loved me very much. My mother would write us letters and she would say that she has an intelligent son. I was an only child and my parents treated Colin like their son.
Colin was an avid user of Viber and Facebook. He would send many messages to the brothers and sisters in the church – especially “Happy Sabbath.” For Colin the Sabbath was the most precious day of the week. Colin loved the Lord Jesus and would praise Him often through hymns of praise.
One of my favourite Viber messages was: “One great thing about isolation is you can eat as much garlic as you want!”
Whenever the brothers and sisters would ask him “How are you Colin?” His reply would be “Any day above ground is a good day!”
Colin loved to eat garlic aioli with mashed avocado. He loved vegan pizza, capsicum relish (or Ajvar), cabbage rolls, beans, hummus, tahini and salad. Colin would prepare oat waffles many times. He loved to eat grapefruit, watermelon, sweet potatoes (which are not my favourite).
Colin’s favourite Bible verse which he liked to repeat was 1 Corinthians 10:31, “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.”
Colin loved to watch the live presentations from Schofields Church in Sydney. He loved to listen to Christian music—he loved the voice of Luiza Spiridon. He loved to read the writings of Ellen G. White and studied the Bible very much.
Let us pray to the Lord that He will continue to strengthen me. He knows everything and He knows the future, which we have no knowledge of.
I have the hope that we will see each other again in the future at that big reunion where there will be no more suffering, tears, pain, cemeteries, separation, or anything that hurts. I am impatiently waiting the second coming of Jesus so that I can re-unite with my darling husband where we can be together for eternity on the Crystal Sea.
Revelation 21:4 – “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”