They may not have had the chance to see each other much, but Bob always answered the phone when his younger sister called.
But one day in 2016 he didn't pick up. And he never called back.
That was when Annette O'Reilly thought something terrible could have happened.
"We didn't see a lot of Bob ... but he phoned very regularly," Ms O'Reilly told the Supreme Court in Dubbo, where the trial of a woman accused of murdering her older brother Robert Dickie is ongoing.
"He would always answer the phone. On the odd occasion that he didn't, he would return our calls within fifteen minutes or half an hour."
When Ms O'Reilly tried to phone Mr Dickie - known to family and friends as Bob - on the morning of June 15, 2016, with urgent news about a family member's health all she heard was the country music track Bob had set as his ringer.
"I left a message and I didn't hear back, so I continued to try to ring. But after the first call, the calls went straight to the message bank," she told the court.
After being unable to reach her brother for more than six hours, Ms O'Reilly said she became concerned and contacted local police to visit his Elong Elong homestead to perform a welfare check.
Police called Ms O'Reilly later that evening to say they had visited the property and a woman there told them Mr Dickie had gone to a party the night before.
That woman was Kylie So, a 50-year-old New Zealand national, who is accused of murdering Mr Dickie.
The 71-year-old retired farmer invited So to stay at his off-grid property, professing his "true love" for her. Crown prosecutor Ian Shaw alleges So became enraged when Mr Dickie tried to kick her out, leading to an altercation which resulted in his death.
Despite extensive searches, no trace of Mr Dickie's body has ever been found.
'Get the c--t out of my father's house'
Unable to reach her brother and unsatisfied with the initial visit from police, Ms O'Reilly said she called her nephew Damien - Mr Dickie's son - and he said he would visit the property.
Police also promised they would return to the property the next day.
Taking to the witness stand, Damien said he and his then-girlfriend drove to Elong Elong from Cessnock on June 16 and had a look around the property. There was no sign of Mr Dickie.
Later that evening So, who had hitched a ride into Dubbo to go shopping for the day, arrived back at the property and Damien confronted her.
"I kept asking, where is he? When is he coming back from the party?" he told the court.
Under cross examination by defence counsel Ian Nash, Damien said he had been angry during the encounter.
Mr Nash said a statement from police on scene records him as saying "get the c--t out of my father's house, she killed him, get her the f--k out."
"I was upset, I was worried," Damien said in response.
"[But] if I was aggressive something would have been done... if I was so angry I probably would have. I didn't though."
Signs of a secret life?
Although Ms O'Reilly said her relationship with her brother was a close one, she conceded there were parts of her brother's life she was not aware of.
She said Mr Dickie had told her about an instance where a Russian woman had come over to stay with him for a week, but made no mention of a woman coming to stay with him from New Zealand.
He also did not tell his sister the details of other encounters he had with young women from the Dubbo and Forbes area or about a sexual assault allegation one had made against him.
"Did you ever question the truthfulness of what your brother told you about his relationships?" Mr Nash asked.
"No," Ms O'Reilly replied.
"Did you think he was an honest person generally?" he asked.
"Yes," she replied.
The trial of Kylie So continues in the NSW Supreme Court in Dubbo this week.
Support is available for those who may be distressed:
- 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732)
- National Sexual Abuse and Redress Support Service 1800 211 028
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