Molly Ticehurst funeral
Molly Ticehurst has been remembered by loved ones at a funeral service in the NSW town of Forbes. Image by Lukas Coch/AAP PHOTOS
  • crime, law and justice

‘Best mum in the world’: town stops to farewell Molly

Stephanie Gardiner May 2, 2024

Tony Ticehurst always imagined his daughter Molly might change the world – but not at the cost of her life.

The bereaved father led tributes as hundreds of mourners gathered to remember the 28-year-old mother and childcare worker, 10 days after her alleged domestic violence murder in the NSW central west.

Her death in Forbes has intensified a growing national movement against gendered violence, though her family and friends remembered the happy memories she left behind.

Molly Ticehurst funeral
 Molly Ticehurst was a well-loved member of the Forbes community, the service was told. Image by Lukas Coch/AAP PHOTOS 

Mr Ticehurst told people gathered at the town’s rugby field, including Premier Chris Minns and senior police, how local children would see his daughter on the street, saying “look Mum, Dad! It’s Molly.”

“Molly didn’t have to leave us to grow her angel wings – they came with her as standard equipment,” Mr Ticehurst said at the funeral on Thursday afternoon, his voice cracking with emotion.

“Every parent would like to see their child change the world, but not at this cost.”

Mourners heard a message from Ms Ticehurst’s six-year-old son: “Dear mum, I love you.

“I miss our holidays together and our tickle fights, I wish you were here.

“I miss you a lot and I will love you every day and night. You are the best mum in the world.”

Chris Minns at Molly Ticehurst funeral
 NSW Premier Chris Minns was among the mourners who attended Molly Ticehurst’s funeral. Image by Lukas Coch/AAP PHOTOS 

A red hearse carrying her white casket was driven onto the oval, as Mr Ticehurst led a roaring cavalcade of about 100 motorcycles.

Colourful balloons and bright flowers dotted the field in the centre of town, while most small businesses closed their doors and surrounding streets fell silent.

The service was told Ms Ticehurst spent much of her childhood travelling around Australia with her parents before she returned to Forbes at 18.

“Molly rolled into town in her little red Rio and didn’t we know about it,” her lifelong friend Aidan Clarke told the crowd, pausing to gather his emotions.

Molly Ticehurst funeral
 Mourners hold colourful balloons as they approach the casket. Image by Lukas Coch/AAP PHOTOS 

Mr Clarke said Molly was known for her sense of fun and adventure, often driving her friends down Forbes’ main street for “mainys”.

“Most of us have done a few mainys in our lives, usually when we were younger … not our Mol, she did it at 28.” 

Ms Ticehurst was dedicated to her work with local children, who knew her as “Mol Mol”.

But her son was the centre of her life.

Molly Ticehurst funeral
 Molly Ticehurst’s casket arrives to a guard of honour at the public service Image by Lukas Coch/AAP PHOTOS 

“Everything Molly did was for (him), every breath she took was for (him),” Mr Clarke said.

“He was and is her world.”

At the end of the service, colleagues, friends and family formed a guard of honour next to the hearse.

Ms Ticehurst’s treasured car followed the procession, her son sitting in the back seat behind his father.

Molly Ticehurst funeral
 Bouquets of colourful balloons and bright flowers dot the oval in the centre of Forbes. Image by Lukas Coch/AAP PHOTOS 

Her final, sombre journey was described as her “last mainy”.

Former Forbes mayor Rhonda Keane officiated the funeral, closing with a tribute to Ms Ticehurst’s strength and bravery in reporting her ex-boyfriend’s violence to police in the final weeks of her life.

“We’ll all commit to do better to help end the cycle of violence against women,” Ms Keane said.

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