Trip takes tragic turn

Annie McManus also known as Siew-Ling-Tye was killed in a car accident while holidaying in new Zealand last week.

Annie McManus also known as Siew-Ling-Tye was killed in a car accident while holidaying in new Zealand last week.

NYAH and Nyah West were left in shock and mourning after a beloved member of their community was killed in a car crash while holidaying in New Zealand last Monday. 

Annie McManus, also known as Siew-Ling-Tye, was a passenger in the vehicle travelling in Levin, New Zealand.

Details of the accident remain unclear. 

She was aged 59. 

Mrs McManus and her husband, Jim, had spent the past 12 months refurbishing Nyah Pizza Mart incorporating a Shell Service Station and road house. 

Previously owning the Two Bays Caravan Park, they had built up a loyal customer base. 

It was those customers and friends who turned to the Nyah Nyah West and Surrounds Community Forum Facebook page to find out why there was tape around the roadhouse informing customers the store was closed.

Speaking with The Guardian on Wednesday, Mr McManus was on his way to New Zealand where a memorial service was held yesterday. 

Mrs McManus will be buried in Malaysia by family in a traditional Hindu ceremony.

"She was a person who wanted to make everybody happy," Mr McManus said.

"Everybody had to be looked after, that's just the way she was.

"When we took on the pizza shop she would not buy second rate food because in her mind the locals had to have the best.

"She kept the store spotlessly clean and enjoyed working with people."

Mr McManus' sister Robyn Scott echoed those sentiments.

"Her dream was to grow the business into a Chinese restaurant eventually and she worked really hard," she said.

"She cooked, served and cleaned and she liked to put her own spin on the meals.

"She made her own bases and batter; she was really a perfectionist in everything she did.

"She loved people and kids and was just so generous and caring.

"She would often be up at 5am and work until 11pm at night and was a really hard worker putting everybody else before herself."

Born in Malaysia, she lived near the border of Singapore and travelled to Australia on a working visa about 14 years ago. 

She gained work on local farms and would congregate at Two Bays Caravan Park with other workers to be dispersed to their working locations each day by bus.

Mr McManus part-owned Two Bays at the time and one morning when he was trying to organise the workers onto buses he found himself overwhelmed.

"I was standing there trying to organise all these people and I was getting confused because there was so many of them all going to different farms," he said.

"She just stood up, told everyone to pipe down and took control of the situation.

"I was just impressed with her ability to handle the people and take control."

Their relationship flourished over the next year but then it came time for her to return to Malaysia.

"I went to visit her there a couple of times and I ended up telling her she needed to come back," Mr McManus recalled.

"We were married soon after in Robyn's backyard and we continued to run Two Bays together. 

"She'd look after all the itinerant workers that came through and she was just loved by so many people.

"Today, I have over 200 messages on my phone that have come from all around the world."

Ms Scott recalled her generosity in going above and beyond for people she hardly knew.

"The workers would come out here, sometimes arriving with nothing, not even food," she said.

"She would feed them all, I have no idea how, and if they needed a doctor or a dentist she would drive them into town."

"Once they'd moved on to another region for work, if something happened, if they had a car accident or something like that, she would go to them and nurse them back to health."

Mr McManus said the service station would remain closed until July 23.

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