Nine CEO David Leckie used to say that John Singleton, a self-declared
long-time Kerry Packer mate, had the biggest mouth in Sydney and could
never keep a secret.”

John Singleton at Brian Ray’s funeral last Friday:

[Packer], who is supposed to be the toughest, most ruthless man on the
planet, [was] crying like a wuss, like a p*of.” (From The Sydney Morning Herald, shown below. The Weekend Australian’s version of the quote is shown right.)

Kerry Packer guards his privacy closely and won’t have appreciated such
disclosure about his feeling for the man who dragged him into the
Costigan Royal Commission in the early 1980s. Singo told the mourners
on the Gold Coast last Friday that Packer had called Brian Ray’s sons
Tom and Jack to express his sorrow, but Australia’s richest man decided
not to interrupt a European vacation to actually attend the funeral.

other great mate, Gerry Harvey, was also a no-show, but Singo made up
for both his missing billionaire mates with plenty of passion in his
eulogy: “Gerry Harvey rang, inconsolable. These are the strongest
people in Sydney who couldn’t believe that Brian and Kath were no longer
with us. I’ve never known such love, I’ve never known such a beautiful
couple. I can’t believe they’re not here, I can’t believe that they’ve
left us.”

The Courier Mail had an interesting account of the Brian Ray funeral on Saturday, claiming 1,500 people attended. The SMH said it was fewer than 1,000 and adopted a more superior tone, describing it as “every inch the Gold Coast funeral.”

Peter Fray

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