At the forefront of the NSW Health's COVID-19 pandemic detection team, often standing alongside ex-premier Gladys Berejiklian and ex-health minister Brad Hazzard, was Dr Jeremy McAnulty.
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Locals in Nyngan were among those who recognised Dr McAnulty, who lived with his brothers in the Bogan Shire town while growing up.
He went to school in Nyngan before becoming a doctor and an infectious disease control expert that helped his country manage the deadly pandemic.
Impressed by his achievements, the Nyngan Show Society invited Dr McAnulty back as the special guest for this month's 130-year anniversary celebrations.
Dr McAnulty will be bringing his mother and wife along, to address the show opening day on Sunday, May 14, coinciding with this year's Mothers' Day.
"I am very lucky and proud to have grown up in Nyngan, which I consider my hometown," Dr McAnulty said in his letter to the society.
"Nyngan is such a welcoming and friendly place, allowing a child like me to thrive academically and grow up in a safe and supported environment, that included the joys of fishing, swimming, and boating on the Bogan [River]."
Dr McAnulty's family had moved to Nyngan from nearby Gilgandra when their father Bill, took up the high school principal's position at Nyngan High School in 1975 while their mother, Helen, also worked at the school.
He and his two older brothers, Greg and Chris, attended Nyngan High, while their oldest brother went to study dentistry in Sydney and later returned to practise in Nyngan for many years.
Dr McAnulty said he went to the University of Sydney to study medicine in 1980 and after completing his degree, did a medical residency at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, including a term in Dubbo Base Hospital.
"Then having decided to focus on [disease] prevention, I joined the public health training program at NSW Health and later trained in disease detection with the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention," Dr McAnulty said.
He has been a public health physician and executive director of Health Protection NSW since 2010.
"They're excited to come back home and meet up with people they still know, just connecting back to Nyngan he still considers his home," the show society's secretary Kathleen Korn said.
"He said he's bringing his wife and mother to the show. I was at high school when Bill was the principal and he was there with his brothers."
Ms Korn initiated the invitation because the whole town was "impressed by Jeremy doing a great job" during the pandemic.
"The way he conducted himself in his job throughout the pandemic has impressed us all, he was very good at what he did and it was so nice to have seen him doing such as great job," Ms Korn said.
Soon as the invitation landed on Dr McAnulty's letterbox, Ms Korn said "he responded very quickly and said he'd love to come for a visit and was very pleased to be coming back to his hometown."
Dr McAnulty will be opening the show on Sunday, May 14, when the Nyngan Young Woman of the Year winner will be announced.
IN OTHER NEWS:
The recipient of the 2023 Royal Agriculture Society of NSW Award for selfless service to the community and commitment and support of the show that has been running for 130 years, Betty Jackson, will be awarded on the day.
Last year's award recipient was Bomber Moxham, then Chris Dutton in 2021, Elaine McLaughlin in 2019, and Philip Gibson in 2018.
One of the new attractions at the show is the wooden sculptures of native animals such as the crocodile by Rob Bast whose displays will be next to the cattle yards, and a pancake-eating competition on Monday at 2.30pm at the Walker Pavilion.
Mr Bast, a sculptor from the Yarra Valley in Victoria will use a chainsaw to show spectators how he creates sculptures on both show days.
The 130th Nyngan Show will be held over two days on Sunday, May 14 and Monday, May 15, at the showground.
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