Local soccer legends to be remembered

2018-04-03 06:02
Father Charles Blows

Father Charles Blows

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A Maitland-based group of former football players urges the public to come out in numbers to celebrate the lives of local soccer legends on Saturday.

They will be hosting a remembrance celebration on Saturday 9 April at Good Shepherd Church from 14:00.

Father Charles Blows, the organiser, says the event aims to show respect to all the legends who made an impact in the community through soccer.

He says they find it important to remember and thank them and their families for sharing their lives with the communities and setting a good example for many.

These legends come from Maitland, Kensington and Factreton. Some have already fallen, but their families are expected to represent them and receive the honour on their behalf.

According to Father Blows, the group has about 150 members, most of whom are pensioners. They played for different teams pre-1994 including Coronations FC, Garden Village FC, St Athenians FC, Norway Parks, Saxon Rovers and other teams.

He says of the many teams, only three are still in existence.

“The rest amalgamated after 1994 when the country underwent a transition stage. However, we continue to support and groom the youth. We are all old and all we can do now is be there for one another.

“We have various programmes for our members because we are determined to keep the spirit soccer brought among us alive.”

He advises that sport and a healthy lifestyle are the key to a healthier and longer life.

One of the legends, Kevin Gordon (64), says he is excited about the service and encourages legends from areas outside Maitland to attend.

Gordon, a former Manchester United from Kensington player and currently a Norway Parks manager, says the service will help reconnect them with former players from other areas.

“A player passes on and we don’t know about it. Some have not seen each other for 20 to 30 years. We want to be able to phone each other and say ‘how are you?’”

The widows of late legends will be invited to the service “so they do not feel forgotten”, Gordon explains.

Gordon says a big reunion programme for the legends will take place in October this year.

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