Discussion Rocket Rod Owen's sad story

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BigPowerForward

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Unbelievably sad story about former star Saint, Rod Owen. Great that the club is finally doing something about it and that his life seems to be back on track.

A must read about a bygone era.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-04...fl-star-rod-owen-hiding-dark-secrets/13255584
One of the best junior footballers I've seen. Could kick it a mile, left or right foot. As a teen, we would occasionally mix in similar circles. Alcohol was his undoing.
Such a tragic waste of talent.
 

gringo2011

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I heard this exact story from a guy that does work for me. He was Owen's best mate growing up and played his junior footy with the Saints. Played under 19s with Plugger and reckons Owen was a bigger talent than Plugger. Said there was a pedo that was molesting him inside the club and once his dad died his life fell apart. His dad wanted to hold him back and the club stepped in and pressured him to start. He hates the club for all the sh*t they put Owen through and left the club to move to West Coast but never made seniors. He claims the club knew and protected the molester, pretty bad stain on the club and much worse than what we did to Robbie Muir even. Thank fu** we have a decent administration now.
 

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El_Duderino

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That was a sobering read.

St Kilda really let him down. I would argue their behaviour and treatment of him early on led to most of the problems he had with family and the fact he would drink “to feel numb”.

Obviously the molestation of him as a child and his father’s death affected him too but it seems the club really took advantage of him.

To offer no support or guidance during that time and I know it was a different time back then - people were declared soft or weak if they had mental issues - but the fact he went to Melbourne and they offered him support just speaks levels about the poor admin back in those days.

So sad to hear about his tumultuous relationship with his daughter too. I hope Layla and him have a better relationship now.
 

pebblesofsand

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El_Duderino

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You know about things but then, later on, you realise you know nothing about things.
I knew about the infamous disco
That bit about thirty Kalua shots before he “really got started” was something else though.

clearly a club that just didn’t give a fu**. No wonder we won four consecutive spoons.
 

stfan

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Unbelievably sad story about former star Saint, Rod Owen. Great that the club is finally doing something about it and that his life seems to be back on track.

A must read about a bygone era.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-04...fl-star-rod-owen-hiding-dark-secrets/13255584
Thank you for sharing. It is a must read as you say.

The article is one of the best and most informative that I have ever read, though the content is grim and troubling.

There are lessons for us all in its content.

I watched Rod play at the Saints and he was an amazing talent. Of that there is no doubt.
 

gringo2011

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On a slightly unrelated note is russel Jackson the same one that did the Muir article. If so I think St Kilda might have done something to him because this is the second enormous article by the ABC that paints the club in such a poor light.

I think we were just a really dysfunctional operation around that time. We really fell apart in the 1980s and some of the dysfunctional acts are starting to come to light. You've got to own your past to move forward. I think we have the right people in place to front up, own it and make amends for it. This is the kind of situation that Matt Finnis really seems to handle well. He's got a lot of compassion and takes the situation seriously and doesn't try to back the clubs image over fronting up and doing the right thing.
 

stfan

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One of the best junior footballers I've seen. Could kick it a mile, left or right foot. As a teen, we would occasionally mix in similar circles. Alcohol was his undoing.
Such a tragic waste of talent.
I think the article clearly reveals what was his undoing which was not alcohol. The alcohol and drugs and other behaviours were due to what happened to him as a child and then compounded by losing his father.
 
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El_Duderino

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Not a period the club should be proud of or celebrated.
It seems like the club really is ashamed of it. The bit that pissed me off was butters talking about how poor the admin while he was getting high of coke every day.
Makes me more aware of why we have sucked for so long with a toxic culture and why I’m so convinced this admin is the one that will lead us to the promised land.
 

El_Duderino

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I think the article clearly reveals what was his undoing which was not alcohol. The alcohol and drugs and other behaviours were due what happened to him as a child and then compounded by losing his father.
Agreed. The club is the most to blame - these days it wouldn’t happen with all the support players have.
 

Verdun

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The article is very very well written.

The long-term impact of trauma is clearly articulated, along with the impact on Rod Owen. As mostly happens it is not until long after the significant events occurred it is found out that the cause of all the pain is not just for Rod but those around him.

There are obvious lessons here for the St Kilda Football Club, I have faith that the club will learn and act appropriately.
 

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El_Duderino

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I think we were just a really dysfunctional operation around that time. We really fell apart in the 1980s and some of the dysfunctional acts are starting to come to light. You've got to own your past to move forward. I think we have the right people in place to front up, own it and make amends for it. This is the kind of situation that Matt Finnis really seems to handle well. He's got a lot of compassion and takes the situation seriously and doesn't try to back the clubs image over fronting up and doing the right thing.
Yep I really like the way Finnis reached out to both him and Muir. Seems to really be owning what the previous admin did.

weird comparison but it reminds me of KRudd apologising to the indigenous people - owning history and even though he directly has s not responsible he was aware of the toxic culture of the past resulting in these atrocities.

also could you imagine if Paddy had to deal with that backwards administration these days. So glad things have changed.
 

gringo2011

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Agreed. The club is the most to blame - these days it wouldn’t happen with all the support players have.

You can only hope it wouldn't inside an AFL club but I'm pretty sure there are as many predators as there ever has been they just find new ways to access kids. There was some story the other days about a couple of soldiers who tried to get some 12 year old girl.
 

gringo2011

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Yep I really like the way Finnis reached out to both him and Muir. Seems to really be owning what the previous admin did.

weird comparison but it reminds me of KRudd apologising to the indigenous people - owning history and even though he directly has s not responsible he was aware of the toxic culture of the past resulting in these atrocities.

also could you imagine if Paddy had to deal with that backwards administration these days. So glad things have changed.

Stark contrast to Eddie Maguire too. Didn't give a sh*t about the damage caused, was just about protecting the image of the club. And ironically ended up making a mess of it.
 

Verdun

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Stark contrast to Eddie Maguire too. Didn't give a sh*t about the damage caused, was just about protecting the image of the club. And ironically ended up making a mess of it.

Went to a training session for work last week where the presenter stated:

'There is strength in vulnerability'


That stayed with me more than anything, it is nuanced and mature to recognise the impact of the past and the need for actions and change.
 

BigPowerForward

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I think the article clearly reveals what was his undoing which was not alcohol. The alcohol and drugs and other behaviours were due to what happened to him as a child and then compounded by losing his father.
Poorly worded on my part.
I meant that alcohol bought all his problems to the surface and he struggled to cope.
 

Remboy

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I remember seeing him kick five in a quarter against North at Moorabbin one day. He was an amazing talent.
This story should make people think before they pass judgements on a players performance. We have no idea what is going on in their lives.
I hope he is in a better place now.
 

George

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I'm glad he takes some responsibility for his actions, namely his drug and alcohol abuse and general behaviour. Losing a parent at a young age is extremely tough, I can speak to that, but that doesn't give you a free pass to act a certain way.

Our club definitely didn't help the situation but I think his childhood and the loss of his father, a huge piece of a young man's growth, were what led to the life Rod has had.

I also believe our club's behaviour was behaviour that was normal at the time. That's not to excuse it, but you would imagine that every club had their issues around dealing with mental health and general player welfare. Look at how Nicky was treated by opposition supporters for instance. It was the norm back then.

And how is Matt Finnis. That bloke is shouldering responsibility for things that he wasn't involved in. Gee we have some terrific people at St.Kilda.

Really glad to see he has been sober for quite a while now.
 

sunny3193

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Rocket is one of the most prodigious talents I’ve ever seen at St Kilda.
I also thought he was the biggest waste that I had seen too.
(And just quietly, I was not alone in that judgment).
A very sobering read for me this morning.
If we are able to have an honest rapprochement with him, and that he feels welcome back at the club, then I think Finnis will have earned his salary.
 

jwikked

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I'm glad he takes some responsibility for his actions, namely his drug and alcohol abuse and general behaviour. Losing a parent at a young age is extremely tough, I can speak to that, but that doesn't give you a free pass to act a certain way.

Our club definitely didn't help the situation but I think his childhood and the loss of his father, a huge piece of a young man's growth, were what led to the life Rod has had.

I also believe our club's behaviour was behaviour that was normal at the time. That's not to excuse it, but you would imagine that every club had their issues around dealing with mental health and general player welfare. Look at how Nicky was treated by opposition supporters for instance. It was the norm back then.

And how is Matt Finnis. That bloke is shouldering responsibility for things that he wasn't involved in. Gee we have some terrific people at St.Kilda.

Really glad to see he has been sober for quite a while now.
I think you have to go back further than simply blaming his actions on drug and alcohol abuse. The sexual abuse from a young age from multiple men for starters. That would mess anyone up, compounding with the party culture at St Kilda and no real father figure in his life. No wonder he went off the rails.

Does anyone know if Albert Briggs is still alive? I doubt it, but I hope his life membership was revoked all the same.
 

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