A fitting farewell
THEY say the measure of a man is not how he died but how he lived.
In the case of Graham ‘Polly’ Farmer, while his feats on the football field helped him transcend the game, it was his kindness and desire to inspire others that defined him as one of Australia’s true legends.
Family, friends, fans and everyone in between gathered at Optus Stadium in Burswood on Monday to pay tribute to Polly’s life, at the first State funeral to be held for a footballer in WA.
Almost 1500 people squeezed into the River View Room, with more in the stadium’s grandstands.
The service itself was a celebration of a man whose impact extended far beyond the realms of sport.
“We’re in the company of a champion,” master of ceremonies Russell Woolf said.
Treasurer Ben Wyatt spoke of how the Polly Farmer Foundation had inspired Aboriginal people to fulfil their potential in the face of challenges.
“He changed the way Aboriginal people felt about themselves,” he said.
“I suspect why so many are here today is because of what he did with his greatness off the field.”
The foundation’s vicepresident Fred Cheney said Farmer once told him “there’s a lot of good jobs in Australia, but I don’t see many Aboriginal people holding them”.
Mr Cheney pledged the foundation would continue to deliver Farmer’s vision of helping Aboriginal people access a quality education to set them up for life, just as he had at Sister Kate’s in Queens Park.
Farmer’s daughter Kim said her father was a caring dad whose love of football was dwarfed only by his love for his family.
Thousands gathered to farewell Polly Farmer. d495338