The passing of a great man
ALL six Northern Districts Rugby League clubs will cast aside their rivalry to pay respects to a fallen giant of bush footy.
Nev Finlay, life member of both Gin Gin Hawks and the NDRL, died peacefully recently, however his legacy will benefit the Gin Gin and rugby league communities for many years to come.
With all games played at Avondale last weekend, it only took a quick call from Gin Gin Hawks secretary David Helmore to Avondale president Herb Lutz to get the ball rolling.
“I knew they would say yes and it was a very kind gesture,” Helmore said.
Before Gin Gin took on Miriam Vale, the NDRL stopped for a minute’s silence.
Lutz told the News Mail there was never any doubt the club would pay tribute to Hawks’ elder statesman.
“Nev and I go back to day one of the NDRL,” Lutz said.
“He was 90 years old and had a great innings.”
Long-time friend Doug Simonsen, who played for the Hawks in its inaugural season in 1965, said Nev loved his rugby league.
“We were approached by Avondale and from the northern districts to see if we could get a team up and running to make the comp bigger and stronger,” he said.
“Nev became one of the driving forces of that.
“We have had our ups and downs over the years but it was only because of the efforts of people like Nev that got the club going.
“I had a lot of respect for him and valued his friendship very much.”
FITTING TRIBUTE: Nell and Nev Finlay at their 90th birthday celebrations before Nev’s recent death.