A champion all round
CHAMPION: Myrtleford former star footballer and sportsman Pat Quirk.
MYRTLEFORD family man and former star footballer Pat Quirk has been remembered by his family and friends.
Pat was born in Cobram on October 7, 1943 – the first child of Hugh and Lima Quirk of Barooga, on the New South Wales side of the Murray River.
His sisters were Margaret, Lorraine, Judith and Alice and brothers Kevin, Peter and Noel.
Pat went to Barooga Primary School until year four and then to St Joseph’s in Cobram but went to work when he was 14, shearing up to 180 sheep a day with his father in sheds around Mansfield, western Victoria, Riverina and Tasmania.
Other seasonal jobs included hay-carting, splitting and cutting red gum posts and picking fruit.
Pat was 13 when he ran the boundary for Barooga Football Club and played his first senior football game when he was 15.
He was lucky to play alongside his father and later tied for the Picola and District Football League best and fairest award but lost on a countback.
In 2002 – 40 years later – he was awarded a league best and fairest medal.
Pat also loved cricket and at 13 was Barooga’s opening bowler.
He represented Murray Valley District League at Country Week and his best was 6/28.
Pat was recruited by South Melbourne Football Club – which later became the Sydney Swans – and played with the club for a year before returning to Cobram.
He also played in a basketball grand final in 1963 and in 1964 moved to Myrtleford, playing 162 games with the Saints football club, including the 1970 premiership side and being named best player.
He was a life member of the Saints and on the committee. He helped with the bar and gate and joined the Buffalo Soldiers.
He was named Whorouly club’s best and fairest in 1973.
He also played golf – scoring an albatross in 1994 and a hole in one in 1996.
Pat started his adult working life as a fork lift driver at the old Myrtleford mill and then as a front-end loader driver for Jack Matheson.
When the North East timber haulage firm known as Greenfreight started he worked in the forestry department and ran Greenfreight’s side of ANM in Albury before taking on the same role at Benalla mill.
In 1986 he started work at Myrtleford mill until retirement in 2001 because of Wegner’s granulomatosis.
Pat married Mary Toner in 1966 and the couple had three daughters: Donna, Janine and Narelle.
He later became the proud and loving Pa of Jack, Tim, Emma, Sally, Chloe, Mitchell and Tara.
His partnership with Mary had lasted 51 years when he died on July 29, this year.