Uncle Jack Charles to receive state funeral in Victoria

Indigenous elder, actor and activist Uncle Jack Charles will receive a state funeral.  He passed away earlier this month following a stroke.

The actor’s family have given permission for his name and image to be used in this story.

A state funeral will be held at Hamer Hall in Melbourne on 18th October. It will be streamed into the state’s prisons where Charles worked with many prisoners.

The Boon Wurrung, Dja Dja Wurrung, Woiwurrung and Yorta Yorta man, who also had links to several other clans across south-eastern Australia, was a member of the Stolen Generation.

He was removed from his family when he was just four months old. His early life was filled with abuse that he experienced in institutions and a disconnect from his Aboriginal identity.

In a career that spanned decades the Stolen Generations survivor used creative platforms to share his experiences and the effects government policies had on Indigenous communities.

In the 1970’s he co-founded, alongside Bob Maza, the Nindethana Aboriginal Theatre group, creating a pathway for young Indigenous actors.

In 2008 the documentary Bastardy documented how trauma from his childhood and led to years of homelessness, drug addiction and crime, that saw Charles have several stints in prison.

His 2010 theatrical production Jack Charles vs The Crown brought hm widespread acclaim. In 2019 he published his memoir Uncle Jack: Born-again Blakfella which shred his personal journey. He explored his families history via an edition of the SBS program Who Do You Think You Are. 

More recently he appeared in the television series Cleverman and Preppers.

OIP Staff

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