The spirit of the late Robbie Stewart was alive on Saturday when the Moruya Sharks and Batemans Bay Tigers took to the field for the annual Robbie Stewart Memorial Shield and annual Indigenous round.
The home side reserve team donned brightly-coloured memorial jerseys, designed by Stewart’s cousin, Lee ‘Langer’ Nye, as they sought to win back the shield for 2017.
The match held special significance for the Moruya legend’s widow, Carlie Remm, and daughter, Melody Stewart, aged 8, who led the Sharks onto the field before the game.
Ms Remm said the occasion was a poignant way of remembering Stewart through his beloved game.
“He just loved footy so I think the game is just that special,” she said.
“He would love to know that all the boys are doing it for him, which is why it’s such a special thing.”
This August will mark the fifth anniversary of Stewart’s death from a brain tumour.
Ms Remm said 2017 had been a positive year for the family, who had bounced back from the struggle and were looking to the future.
“After we lost Rob, there were a lot of family members who passed away,” she said.
“We did have quite a tough couple of years.
“Today’s a way of coming together and remembering those who are gone, but also remembering we’re all here for each other.
“For us and the Moruya community, it’s just a way of remembering Rob and how much he loved footy and his family.”
Father Ronnie Stewart said the Welcome to Country at a packed out Ack Weyman Oval.
“He turned 30 on July 5th … this would’ve been special for him,” he said.
Full match report to come.
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