Krystal’s love of footy started in an Emerald backyard
SOME of Krystal Cook's earliest - and fondest - childhood memories involve her and twin brother Joshua playing footy in the back yard of their Emerald home.
Her family made the move to Rockhampton when she was eight, her love of the game only growing stronger in the rugby league heartland.
That passion would ultimately lead her into an administrative role with the CQ Capras.
Six years on and she is now the club's operations manager, a demanding job but one she loves.
Her dedication to the role saw Krystal among the nominees for The Morning Bulletin's Most Influential Person of the 2019 Season.
One nomination read: "Krystal goes above and beyond and is always at weekend games and even away games, running around organising everyone and everything both on the day and the weeks leading up to the games. The phone rings off the hook and she's always there with an answer or solution. The Mother Hen of the team, they'd all be lost without her."
Krystal said she was humbled to be included in an impressive list of deserved and hard-working volunteers.
"I nearly cried when you told me (I'd been nominated)," she said.
"It's nice to know people think of me when they see something like that."
Krystal also manages to strike the balance between work and family life and is excited about celebrating her baby boy Hamish's first Christmas.
The nominees are:
Shannon Littleboy, Rockhampton Brothers JRL: Secretary, first aid officer, now 2020 president, first female in Rockhampton Brothers JRL history. Shannon goes above and beyond to ensure things run smoothly for every team and goes along to fill in as a first aid officer in all age groups even when her children are not playing. Rockhampton Brothers are extremely grateful for her effort.
Scott Peters, Rocky Brothers Junior Rugby League: Scott has coached the following teams for 2019 - Brothers 17 girls and 18 boys, Rocky Rustlers 16 and 18 girls, and TCC open girls. If it wasn't for Scotty our girls comp in town wouldn't exist. He goes over and beyond for Brothers, the representative sides and TCC. Nothing is ever too much hassle for Scott and his passion to get the girls footy comp strong in Rocky is outstanding.
Melanie Clark, manager of Gracemere U12 Cubs: She has managed this team of kids for years and is always there for them, either to cheer them on or pull them into line. She is a busy mum herself but is always there even for us parents and she has a heart of gold.
Tasha Lamey, Norths/Sharks: Tasha has my vote. Every day this woman is on the phone talking football or at the fields. From playing back in the '90s and then again on 2012 ongoing until 2019, Tasha is one of the ladies who helped get women's rugby league up and running alongside some other fabulous women. Tash has been an FAO for years for Norths and now has moved over to Sharks to take on the role as head coach for the A-grade women. Tash has also taken sides away to the QMC to help the ladies become more confident in the game. She is an all-rounder who is the best mentor for women's rugby league
Cory Peterson, Fitzroy/Gracemere Sharks: In 2019 has ran a junior club as president/groundskeeper/setup/fundraiser/coach and many more roles and also had time to jump on board with the seniors strap/run water and pack up for both reserve grade and A grade. He is also a father of many of his own.
Debbie Field, Emu Park: For her endless dedication to Emu Park football club. She's constantly run off her feet. She's like a second Mum to many of the players. She's done so much for absolutely everyone. She's amazing.
Graeme White, Norths/Fitzroy Gracemere: Graeme has made an awesome contribution to rugby league in at both Norths and Fitzroy Gracemere this year. He has led the repairs to the clubhouse dedicating every Saturday during the off-season to not only do the hands-on repairs but to inspire others to help as well as teach them the building skills. Graeme backs this up by supporting the coaches every Tuesday and Thursday at training then adds strapping training into his schedule on Wednesday nights. We are very fortunate to have Graeme and his wife Nat on board this year.
Duane Carpenter: Duane lives and breathes local football and gives his heart and soul to the game and all involved. This year Duane coached mini mods, and internationals for a local footy club Monday to Friday and Sunday is football time. He would be the first there setting up the fields and would be there all day, evening as he would FAO for most teams. He went on to work with the Rustlers and Capras for the juniors and would spend hours planning for how he could develop these young boys, not just on the field. He also went on to coach high school football.
Graham Flenady, Biloela Panthers: This bloke gives his heart and soul to Bilo Panthers, even at away games. He's either there helping/supporting or letting us know he's thinking of us. He is the glue for this club and we love having him around.
Ben Ardley, Norths Knights under-17 girls coach: He has done so much for our team and has done so much to promote girls and women in rugby league, getting us involved in so much training and giving us so many opportunities.
Krystal Cook, CQ Capras: Krystal is operations manager and goes above and beyond and is always at weekend games and even away games, running around organising everyone and everything both on the day and the weeks leading up to the games. Krystal makes sure the front gate volunteers are under control, to the corporate box, canteen and the merchandise tent. The phone rings off the hook and she's always there with an answer or solution. The Mother Hen of the team, they'd all be lost without her. All this while raising one beautiful little boy, who is almost one.
Damian Chapman and Karen Chapman, Brothers: You couldn't ask for anyone else more deserving of this award, from coaching children/adults for 30+ years. Mentors to many on and off the field, club officials of Rockhampton Brothers. I would also like to nominate Damian's Dad (Mr Chapman) as one of the biggest supporters. who loves to watch every game and knows so many players by name. Truly amazing people.
VOTE NOW: Who is Rockhampton rugby league's Most Influential Person of the Year?
This poll ended on 18 December 2019.
Shannon Littleboy, Rockhampton Brothers JRL
Scott Peters, Rocky Brothers Junior Rugby League
Melanie Clark, manager of Gracemere U12 Cubs
Tasha Lamey, Norths/Sharks
Cory Peterson, Fitzroy/Gracemere Sharks
Debbie Field, Emu Park
Graeme White, Norths/Fitzroy Gracemere
Graham Flenady, Biloela Panthers
Ben Ardley, Norths Knights under-17 girls coach
Krystal Cook, CQ Capras
Damian Chapman and Karen Chapman, Brothers
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.