Cec and Bryan pour blood, sweat and tears into sporting park
WHEN it comes to seeing the joy on youngsters' faces, Cec Newman and Bryan Graff would not pour out their blood, sweat and tears any other way. Between them, these hard-working men have devoted almost 40 years to caring for the Norbridge Park soccer complex.
Former hockey player Cec, 78 and 88 year-old Bryan, a Nerimbera soccer player in his day, have just prepared the park for the 2019 soccer season.
"Our first priority after Christmas is to water the out-fields and smaller fields by hand with hoses,” Cec said.
"This year, with the temperature holding for so long, it impeded us using the sprinklers.”
Then they prepare the fields, marking the top fields for school children to play on in the lead-up the Football CQ fixtures, which began last weekend.
After realising the soccer fixtures began a week earlier than they thought, Cec and Bryan had two weeks' work to do in half of the time, but it didn't deter them.
Cec first become involved with Norbridge Park as a volunteer when his two sons played soccer, first with Bluebirds then at Frenchville where he served on the senior committee for 13 years until he retired.
"The environment down (at Norbridge Park) is good,” Cec said.
"There's just the two of us and we've been able to maintain a very cordial relationship. We've never had an argument.
"I look after him and he looks after me.”
"At the end of the day, when you see the kids down there on Saturday - that's what we're there for, their enjoyment.”
Football Rockhampton secretary Gwen Fox praised the efforts of both gentlemen.
"I have great respect in all volunteers and for the two groundsmen because I know the hours they put into the park,” Mrs Fox said.
"They've given their heart and soul to it and it's very much appreciated from myself and our committee.
"We can't thank them enough for still being there for us to help keep these grounds looking the way they do every Saturday.”