Vale Jim "Juby" Wandin | BigFooty

Vale Jim "Juby" Wandin

Discussion in 'Regional Footy' started by localfootyguru, Feb 25, 2006.

  1. localfootyguru

    localfootyguru Club Legend

    Brisbane Lions
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    An article from "The Age" newspaper about the passing away of a country football legend and an amazing individual - Jim Wandin. Footy in the Yarra Valley is certainly going to miss one of natures finest - Jim we salute you.

    Wattle marks departure of fine Wurundjeri elder
    Email Print Normal font Large font By Jenny Brown
    February 25, 2006

    Hundredsa of people turned out at the Healesville football oval yesterday to pay their respects to Jimmy "Juby" Wandin, a former St Kilda player and senior elder of the Wurundjeri tribe.

    There were brothers, aunties and uncles and splashes of red, yellow and black in the crowd. The flowers on Mr Wandin's coffin were red, yellow and black.

    But the rest of the colour and most of the speeches were about a great bloke and great footballer, one of the first indigenous players to play in the VFL. Mr Wandin, a highly respected tribal elder whose traditional country included Melbourne and most of the Yarra River valley, played centre-half forward with St Kilda in 1950-51.

    His former teammate, Neil Roberts, yesterday recalled his skills, his dignity and the fact that no one would have abused him during his VFL career because "everyone had too much respect" for him. Indeed, "if Jimmy got whacked during a match, his teammates would be queuing up to whack the guy who hit him. He was special. A big man in every way." No one ever heard him swear.

    Mr Wandin died last week, aged 73, after a long battle with cancer.

    Before he died he signed a statutory declaration passing his responsibilities as tribal leader to a new ngurungaeta (senior elder).

    That person is Murrindindi, 60, a Wurundjeri descendent who works as a teacher and entertainer, often at the Healesville Sanctuary.

    Yesterday, Mr Wandin's partner, Judy Freeman, passed to Murrindindi a lil-lal, or hunting boomerang, and a sprig of pale yellow wattle.

    Murrindindi told the gathering that as he drove through Cockatoo on his way to see his dying uncle last week he was astounded to see some wattles in bloom. It was not the season for it, he said, but wattle bloom was the time "when most of the elders had gone back to country" (died).

    "I stopped my car and cried. I picked the wattle and I brought it up to him. I said: 'Uncle. I've got the wattle.' He squeezed my hand."

    After the funeral roast, prepared by members of football teams he coached for decades in Healesville and at Apollo Bay, Mr Wandin's coffin was carried to the hearse to the tune of When the Saints Go Marchin' In, backed by the tocking sound of clap sticks.

    He was buried at Healesville Cemetery for he had wanted to be buried in the shadow of Mount Riddell, Murrindindi said.

    Mr Wandin missed by weeks his second opportunity to meet, at the Commonwealth Games, the Queen. The last time he welcomed her he wore his possum skin cloak and it was many years before he divulged the contents of their conversation. He had asked Her Majesty "if she'd seen the scratchings for the races that day".
     

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  2. carntheroos4eva

    carntheroos4eva Suspended

    North Melbourne
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    Sorry to hear about that. That is pretty sad. RIP Jim Wandin
     
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