The important reason why this Tannum tree is decorated
A FALLEN tree on a Tannum Sands beach is keeping former resident Renee Stemm's memory alive for her friends and family.
The tree, at Canoe Point Beach, has been painted and engraved and, more recently, hanging shells and ornaments were added.
For beach-goers it's a welcome decoration and for Renee's mum, Katrina, and sons Mardie and Samuel, it's a place they can visit when they think of their lost loved one.
Katrina said Renee died "suddenly and unexpectedly" in June last year, aged 39.
The former Boyne Island Primary and Toolooa State High school student, who most recently lived in Mackay, spent her weekends at the Tannum Sands beach and Boyne River growing up.
Close friend Lisa Plumbe started decorating the tree and the memorial was quickly taken up by more of her friends and family.
"Renee was far from politically correct or conventional," Lisa said.
"She had a rebellious soul and the most mischievious smile and this tree was made in honour of her and her home town."
While the family was upset to see some decorations taken down, they plan to keep returning to the area and gradually add more drawings and engravings.
Katrina said it was a fitting memorial for her "outgoing and spiritual" daughter.
"We know Renee would be feeling the love from this lovely tribute from her good friends," Katrina said.
"She was the type of person who always had a big smile on her face and she always seemed happy and sparkly.
"She always tried to help everyone."
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