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PuntRoadEnd member Roar34 shares his real life memories of Jack Dyer.
I saw my first Richmond
game in 1939. For those who are too young to realise what living
in those days was like, we were just coming out of a depression, some people
would never really recover from those times.
Then, we had WW2 and Darwin was bombed in 1942. Sorry about the history lesson but it is necessary to get those points over. Football was the opiate of Melbourne.
For one day of the week, yes footy only on Saturdays, we forgot what was happening in the world around us because we had footy! Our heroes strode the turf and each long week telescoped to those couple of hours on a Saturday arvo.
Forget about Sunday, that was a day for reliving the glory of your team winning the day before...if they lost, well there was always a mark or a goal that your team pulled off and, somehow, it made the following week all the more bearable.
If, in my case, Richmond beat those black & whites, then it was all the sweeter, almost as good as winning a flag.
And talking of flags, yes, I saw the Tiges win one in 1943! Nobody was spritelier, nobody could leap as high or kick as long as my glorious Tigers, and the king of them all was No 17, Jack Dyer, the fabulous and feared Captain Blood. And he wasn't a big man, certainly not in the mould of, say, Roy Wright (God, I shudder to think what he would have done to the opposition if he'd had the physique of the Gentle Giant!).
I bet there are wingers playing today who are bigger and taller than JD but, boy, he could hit hard.
I met him just prior to our short-lived appearance in the 1947 finals. I was at the zoo, and Jack was there for a newspaper photo of him looking thoughtfully at a gorilla in a cage (Richmond was due to meet Fitzroy, then known as the Gorillas, in the first semi (?) Final). It is difficult now to convey what effect shaking the great man's hand had on a 12 y.o. He was a god. And I got his autograph!
Jack had been instrumental in helping us make the finals that year but, alas, we were soon out of it and roamed the football wilderness until 1967.
I saw his last game at Punt Road. He kicked 6 goals if my memory serves me correctly. Think on that, some of you present Richmond players...he played 312 games on proppy knees, was always pitched against bigger and stronger men, the target of the opposition bullies, he was physically ill before games, but he kicked 6 goals in his last game. How many current Richmond players can kick 6 goals in a game?
No, Jack belongs to us, to all the Tiger supporters, and he was a gentleman, he made my world worthwhile, he was our Captain Blood.
TRIBUTE TO JACK
PRE member Bunnerz85 wrote this tribute in memory of Jack to commemorate the
second anniversary of his sad passing away.
JACK DYER A biography from the RFC site.
HOW THE DYER LEGEND BEGAN
THE LIFE AND TIMES OF CAPTAIN BLOOD
A LEGEND WRITTEN IN BLOOD
PEACE FOR A CHAMPION
SEND IN THE CLOWNS
TIGERS HONOUR CAPTAIN BLOOD
FAREWELL TO THE LEGENDARY CAPTAIN BLOOD
I OFFER NO APOLOGIES
SPECIAL PRAYERS FOR DYER
IF YOU DON'T MIND UMPIRE
TOUGH, BUT BOY HE COULD PLAY
DAVIS CALLS FOR STATE FUNERAL
CAPTAIN BLOOD HANGS UP BOOTS
DYER'S GONE: TIGERS OF OLD ARE IN SHORT SUPPLY
LOU RICHARDS: JACK A GREAT MATE
FOOTBALL FAREWELLS JACK DYER
JACK DYER-THE TRIBUTES
FROM PRE MEMBERS