Laurie Coleman was born and raised at Arncliffe, Laurie was educated at Marist Brothers. His father served with the RAAF in Papua New Guinea during World War II and passed away at the age of 90.
Ken Constantine grew up in Coogee and was very active as a child, spending much of his youth playing sport, despite his parents conservative views about not doing too much sport. Ken says sports have helped him to develop self discipline and have made him a better person, particularly in his ability to cope with the pressures and challenges of life.
Paul Daley had an idyllic childhood. He grew up in Parsley Bay, near Watson’s Bay, where his father leased and maintained the picnic area and his mother ran the milk bar. He and his brothers swam all day and played touch footy every night before his father would whistle them in for dinner.
Brendan Dumas grew up in Eastwood and Wahroonga as the second youngest of nine children, before his father remarried and had four more children.
Born in 1959
Chris Edwards is the youngest of the Legends. He is an Ambassador for Australian Rotary Health and has worked as a Leadership Coach since 2007. Chris grew up in the Blue Mountains and the Bathurst District and was ‘packed off to boarding school’ at Sydney Grammar at the age of eight.
Alan Farrell was born in Canberra but from the age of four he grew up in Cammeray, on Sydney’s lower north shore, until he married his sweetheart Carole when he was 21.
Trevor Hamilton grew up in Chatswood as the second eldest of three children. He was drawn to outdoor activities since taking up football at the age of seven where he played league and union for 19 years. He says he avoided injury at football because he was a very fast runner.
Wayne Heffernan grew up in Bexley North and moved to Caringbah when he was 13. He was an exceptional sprinter as a kid and a state champion which he says all came quite easily so he decided to take up distance running!
Kerry Heinecke is a stayer. He was born in Waverley and raised in Kensington where he still lives in the family home 73 years later. Like myself and fellow Legend John Tisdale, Kerry was educated at Sydney Grammar School on College Street, next to the current City2Surf starting line.
Geoff Kennett was born in Petersham and comes from a strong sporting background. His father played Sheffield Shield cricket and also captained the Australian Baseball team. Geoff was educated at Trinity Grammar and played 1st grade cricket. His father wanted him to be a cricketer but in about 1959 he took up surfing and joined the North Cronulla Surf Club.
John Langley was born in Earlwood where he lived for 36 years, having bought the family home from his mother. His only real regret is if he had his time again he wouldn’t have played so many years of rugby league, having suffered a very bad knee injury in 1964.
Jim McFall was born in Hornsby and lived at Waterloo before moving to Botany when he was seven. He still lives in the same house in Botany and says he loves the area because, ‘it’s a bit like an out-of-the-way village, yet it’s not far from the beach and close to Centennial Park’.
Rodney Melham grew up in Panania in Sydney’s south west and had what he terms ‘a fairly robust childhood’. He says he was pretty boisterous and no teacher ever thought he’d land on his feet.
Chris Moynham spent most of his childhood growing up in Revesby which in those days was in bushland, with dirt roads and no sewerage. ‘When the ice man came in summer, we used to scab bits of ice,’ he recalls.
Derek Nelson was born in Enniskillen in Northern Ireland. During World War two he grew up in a small village 40 miles from Belfast. From there he could hear the German bombers and see the flames as they bombed the big shipyards in Belfast.
Allan O’Neil grew up in Enmore where he enjoyed mucking around with billycarts and playing tennis in the street. He remembers it as a time without worry, playing with his mates. He did a lot of cycling and recalls with humour one time when he and a mate caught the train to Springwood with their bikes and got lost.
Jim Parker was born and raised in Wollongong the son of a coal miner. His father was also an international soccer referee and refereed soccer at the 1956 Olympics.
Jim Roberts was born in Mosman and grew up with two older brothers at Gladesville until he was 13, when the family moved to Hunters Hill. Along with his brothers, he attended school at Shore Grammar and has always had a love of the outdoors, and particularly sailing. He still goes to the beach at least once a week.
Charles Rochester was born in Frogs Hollow NSW in a single room house with a dirt floor, the youngest of six children. He went to school at the age of 8 and left when he was 12, to work in a butter factory in Casino where he lived with 40 working men in a boarding house.
Bruce Shying grew up in Marrickville until the age of 22. Life as a kid was great and he adds, ‘mum had to be hard because I was a rebel of a kid; when something was on, people would say bring the boys but not Bruce, he’s a pain’.
Bob Stuart was born in the Uki Hotel near Mt Warning and raised in a rural environment around the Tweed River.
‘I had a fantastic childhood and there is nothing I wouldn’t like to do again tomorrow’, stated Bob. He has never lived far from water and it has always been a significant part of his life.
Robert Sully was born in Waverley, the eldest of three and lived all his early life in Bronte. He was always heavily involved with the swimming club and played a lot of water polo. At one time he was secretary treasurer for the swimming club and officiated at the NSW Swimming Championships. He also played rugby for Randwick.
Paul Summerhayes‘ recollection is early life was very busy. He wasn’t keen on school but loved sport and enjoyed swimming and long distance running. Paul always enjoyed partying on Saturday nights, followed by a distance run on Sunday morning as a refresher.
Ted Thompson grew up in Newtown and coincidently went to school with fellow Legend Barry Clunas. He was a big boy for his age and left school at 14, convincing his first employer he was 16. He spent two years doing an accounting course, worked as a dogman and a hotel drink waiter before joining the NSW Fire Brigade in 1962.
John Tisdale was born in Gosford and grew up in Cremorne. He was educated at Sydney Grammar School and as coincidence would have it, was taught science by my father; although he says he was a poor student. His first job was as a bank teller but he later decided on a career as a storeman.
George Wardell was born and raised in a close-knit family in the UK fishing village of Hull, brought up by his mother and his maternal grandfather. His aunt lived two doors away and his Grandparents were three doors away. His father, a fisherman also named George Wardell (aged 32), was lost at sea two months before George was born, as had his father Robert Wardell, also a fisherman, been lost at sea (aged 37).
John Willcocks was born in Sydney, the eldest of three and lived in Chester Hill until the age of 21.
At 15, he left school and started work in the public service as a Clerical Assistant and stayed in the public service for the next 33 years. Currently he works at Access Industries for the Disabled.
Phil Worrall grew up in West Epping where he developed a great love of the outdoors and Australian fauna. His childhood was spent constructing billycarts, cubby houses, reptile cages and playing in the surrounding bushland. His early ambition was to become a zoologist but he matriculated at Sydney University and went on to establish a career in private legal practice.