Heartbreaking: Family farewells second son lost to suicide
For the second time in less than a year, a Maryborough family had to do the impossible - farewelling a son, father, brother and mate who took their own life.
Through tears, those gathered shared their memories of Greg Baker at Maryborough West's LifeChurch on Friday.
The crowd heard he'd once walked from the football field with his collarbone broken in two places, but never let on that he was in pain.
Instead he chose to reach out to others, giving them a shoulder to cry on and a friend to confide in.
But on February 18, the pain Greg was feeling became all too evident.
On Friday, his family and friends came to mourn.
There were so many, the church overflowed with people as hundreds gathered to remember Greg.
Standing by his black casket, which bore the emblem of the Penrith Panthers, his wife Sarah and their children, Lachlan, Maddison and Cooper, shed tears and paid tribute to their husband and father.
The haunting strains of Nothing Else Matters by Metallica opened Greg's funeral, with the lyrics "so close no matter how far" reminding those gathered that he would always be in their hearts.
Civil celebrant Leora Kirk said it was hard to contemplate celebrating Greg's life, especially as the family had endured two losses with the passing of Anthony.
"We can never fill the void left by Greg's death," she said.
"Greg has left this life far too soon."
With the help of friends and family members, Greg's children shared moving tributes to their dad, telling of a man who was always there for them.
His wife Sarah said the happiest day of his life was the day Lachlan was born.
She said Greg had given her four gifts - their three children and his love.
"I don't know how I'm supposed to do this without you," she said.
Sarah shared the last message she got from Greg on the day he died.
He told her on that Thursday morning he was proud of how strong she was.
Sarah told those gathered that if only they had made it to that Thursday night, she would have told him that it was his love that gave her strength.
"I miss your hugs that could take away every pain and every fear," she said.
"I miss your smile and your laugh."
Jeff Nugent from Maryborough Brothers football club, of which Greg was a passionate member, said Greg was a determined footballer who he had instantly liked when he first met him in 2006.
"It was a pleasure to play alongside him," he said.
Many showed up in Brothers' jerseys, while others from rival Maryborough club Wallaroos also came to show their respect for the man they counted as a friend.
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