Rabbitohs superstar helps plans for memorial team
WHEN Jordan Nurcombe died suddenly on the eve of his 13th birthday just a few months ago, family and friends were devastated, now his favourite sport is becoming the backdrop to ensure his memory won’t be forgotten.
The popular young rugby league player was a dynamo on the footy field and his mates are determined to remember him that way, setting out to raise funds to enter a Jordan Nurcombe Memorial team in the 2019 Koori Knock-out.
At this stage no venue has been announced for this year’s knockout but the kids know they’ll need to raise plenty of money to pay for the trip, and they’re over the moon Rabbitoh’s NRL superstar Cody Walker was in Dubbo on the weekend to come to the rescue, showing up at the Bunnings barbecue the boys’ families ran last Saturday and Sunday to help make their dreams come true.
“It’s a pretty sad old story, I remember meeting Jordan at my partner’s cousin’s house a few months ago. I certainly love to help out at these sort of things and help the community out wherever I can,” Walker told Dubbo
“I still remember living in a small community trying to raise money to get to Aboriginal Knock-outs and things like that, and when the community comes together like this it always brings a smile to peoples’ faces. Wherever I can help out I’ll help out.
“I don’t think you can get a stronger group within the community, it’s local people coming together, you can see out here there’s three or four different families coming together and helping out and getting this team together,” he said.
Amy Cubby was Jordan’s aunt and her son Chase was his best mate, so Jordan’s death has hit her family, and extended family, incredibly hard.
That’s why this tight crew are spending long days outside in 40-plus degree heat to help their boys.
“We just have to raise as much money as we can to get the jerseys. We don’t know where the knock-out’s going to be yet, but we’re going to get as much money as we can to be able to take a group of his mates away so they can go out there with his photo on their shirts and remember exactly what he was like when he got out on that field,” Mrs Cubby said.
“It’s a tragedy, but we won’t let his memory die. He’s always with us so we’ll get out there and do whatever we can to make sure noone forgets.
“My husband actually coached Jordan from Under-7s. He was a mad footy fan, loved his Rabbitohs and he played in the Wiradjuri United side in his first knockout when he was 10 turning 11, so this time we’ll be able to put another knock-out team in and put a memorial side in for him," she said.
It was difficult to tell who was Cody’s biggest fan on the day – Amy Cubby, Jordan’s mates or the many Rabbitohs fans who came up to meet him and buy a sausage sanga (with onions) to help kick the fundraising can.
Amy Cubby reckons it’s just Rabbitoh’s NRL superstar Cody Walker, second from right, in Dubbo last weekend with Chase Cubby, Jonah Raidaveta, Braidon Lamb and Terrell Gordon, four of Jordan Nurcombe’s best mates. about a tie between everyone.
“Yeah, look, the kids love him, he’s a big kid himself, but we’ve got a few connections. His wife’s actually one of my cousins so it’s great to have someone you can tap on the shoulder and say 'come out here' (to help) sell a few more sausages – he’s always willing to help out,” she said.
Now she’s hoping the public relations boost given by Cody Walker’s involvement will spur locals to help out.
“Anyone that’s interested in sponsoring the team to help us get the jerseys and socks and shorts, and cover travel costs to get wherever the Knock-out’s going to be help, we’d love to hear from you,” she said.
You can contact Amy on 0407 079 099.