Tribute to Ouyen: Musician returns to inspire his hometown

JEFF Tynan left home with little more than a dream.

All aboard: All tracks lead to Ouyen this weekend for Jeff Tynan, shown on a Melbourne tram.

All aboard: All tracks lead to Ouyen this weekend for Jeff Tynan, shown on a Melbourne tram.

And while he’s since travelled the world, all roads have led him back to the Mallee.

The Underbool boy turned Melbourne musician is back in Ouyen this weekend, hoping not just to perform, but to inspire.

The indie folk singer-songwriter’s return was meant to be about the launch of his EP and the first official showing of his film clip, which features Mallee scenes along the road from Ouyen to Underbool.

But a string of tragic deaths have rocked the small, tight-knit communities of the Mallee in recent months, and the visit home has now taken on greater meaning.

Locals have been left mourning another one of their own this week, following the  death of young Underbool farmer Anthony Wisneske, killed when a silo fell on him.

“We’ve been hit again just when we thought we were recovering,” Tynan said.

“The personal factor is more important now.”

Tynan, who will run a workshop for students at his old school, Ouyen Secondary College, said he hoped to “help the kids deal with some of the stuff that’s gone on”.

“You lose two people out of 200 and you really feel it,” he said.

“When you look at the last few years, we’ve lost the president of the football club, our local butcher, a farmer whose family are all kind of lost without him, and a couple of young boys who were in all the sporting teams.”

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