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REST IN PEACE: George Alder

George Alder, former general manager and director of R. Gunz (Photographic) Pty Ltd, passed away yesterday, January 28 in Brisbane, aged 81.


R. Gunz was one of the great Australian-owned distributors of photographic products through the second half of the 20th century. Among other brands, it was distributor of Olympus cameras and lenses, as well as Konica, Metz, Bronica , Praktica, Henzo albums and Bowon frames at various times.

George Alder, along with people like founder Rudolf Gunz himself, Rolf Barme, Jim Savage, Herbert Blum, Eddie Tromp, Carol Larkins and Bob Pattie established a solid company culture at Rudolph Gunz in which honesty, integrity and loyalty to the customer were the mainstays.

Fresh from school, George Alder began his career at R. Gunz in Sydney way back in 1951, working in the warehouse. He was eventually appointed manager of the new Brisbane office in 1959.

He was an ‘old school’ company rep who always carried samples but often (according to an old friend and colleague, Peter Cosham), did his best business over drinks at the local pub.

In 1960 in Brisbane he met his wife-to-be Myra.

He moved back to Sydney in 1986 as assistant general manager to Rolf Barme, and was appointed general manager in 1988 after Rolf passed away. He then also became a director of R. Gunz (Photographic) Pty Ltd and travelled extensively visiting overseas suppliers including Olympus, Hoya, Metz and Multiblitz, to name a few.

George retired in 2000, along with another highly-respected Gunz executive, Eddie Tromp. ‘It’s the only job I’ve ever had!’ George confessed to trade magazine Photo & Imaging Retailer a few months before retirement.

He returned to Brisbane for the last 15 years of his life.

He is survived by his wife Myra, two daughters and a son, and a number of grandchildren.

George maintained contact with many of his old customers and friends within the photographic trade and regularly attended lunchtime meetings over a drink with a number of old colleagues.

‘In the typical Gunz mould, George was a gentlemen and good to be with,’ noted one of those old colleagues, Peter Rose. ‘He was widely respected in the industry and will be remembered fondly by all who knew him.’

Peter noted that he was never heard to complain regarding the dialysis treatment which was a constant in the latter years of his life.

‘We will all miss you George,’ he said.

George Alder’s funeral will take place on Friday, February 5 at 10.30am,
Mt Thompson Memorial Gardens and Crematorium
329 Nursery Road
Holland Park
Qld 4121

Sincere thanks to Peter Cosham, Peter Rose and Ron Burwood for their assistance.


  1. Malcolm Kennedy Malcolm Kennedy February 1, 2016

    George was a true gentleman ,who did a fantastic job for R.Gunz establishing incredible market domination in the Queensland market.
    He was always a man of his word.

  2. Noel Bentley Noel Bentley February 4, 2016

    George, you will be missed at the Queensland lunches.
    You certainly contributed a lot to the photo trade in Qld and Australia

  3. Lincoln Gray Lincoln Gray February 4, 2016

    Sad to hear of the passing of George Alder. He was a gentleman who was always ready to add his advice, provide support and express enthusiasm for retailer’s marketing initiatives. May he rest in peace.

  4. Robert Heim Robert Heim February 4, 2016

    George was always there when I needed his support, I will be ever grateful, safe travels my friend.

  5. paul curtis paul curtis February 4, 2016

    George always had a calm quiet and extremely effective way of going about business. He gave great support to the industry in a wide variety of ways and this is a very sad loss indeed.

  6. Stephen Scott Stephen Scott February 5, 2016

    George was a great man to work with and a man who was what you saw was what he was,sadly missed rip

  7. Russell Hester Russell Hester February 5, 2016

    Saddened to hear of George’s passing.

    Valued my association with George during my years at Gunz.

    You always new where you were with him.

    A no bullshit style of Guy. ( Loved That)

    RIP George

    Russell Hester

  8. Noel Blake Noel Blake February 5, 2016

    Very sad news to hear of Georges passing. Was respected by all who had contact with him. A man of his word and always pointed me in the correct direction and was understanding when I was at fault. Supported me over my many years at Gunz and left a footprint on the Photo Industry. He has left me with many happy memories and more importantly my respect for his friendship. RIP George and many thanks.

  9. Gordon Sheard Gordon Sheard February 5, 2016

    Indeed sad to hear of the passing of George Alder a staunch family man a great supporter of the Photo Industry on every level, absolute straight shooter.

    Sincere condolences to Myra and all the family.

  10. Leanne Alder Leanne Alder February 12, 2016

    Thanks so much for all these kind words. I’m tearing up at the school as I read all these comments. Other mothers must think I’m a crackpot! and pick up my son, The photo industry and Gunz company has been such a huge part of our livez with so many fond memories. Missing my Dad today.Thanks for the beautiful write ups and comments.

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