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Tigers mourn passing of great

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Updated: August 2, 2015
 
Bannockburn is mourning the loss of club great Bill Caldow.

Bannockburn is mourning the loss of club great Bill Caldow.

BANNOCKBURN club great Bill Caldow is being fondly remembered in local football circles following his death at the age of 88.

A stalwart of both the Tigers and Stonehaven, which merged into Bannockburn at the end of 1969, Caldow passed away in the early hours of Saturday morning.

“He had a massive impact on the whole club – juniors and seniors,” club president Michelle Giles said.

Giles said news of Caldow’s passing created a surreal feeling around Victoria Park on Saturday, where Bannockburn was playing North Geelong.

“One person found out and then it filtered through everybody,” Giles said.

“None of the crowd was talking. It was just really sombre.

“Everyone was in shock.”

Caldow won three senior best and fairest awards with Stonehaven.

He also captained the club, coached the senior and under-18 teams, and served as both secretary and treasurer.

At Bannockburn, where the pavilion is named in his honour, Caldow served 10 seasons as secretary from 1973-82 and 17 as president from 1983-99, while also coaching junior teams.

He was also a life member of the Tigers and the GDFL, where he was No.1 ticket holder.

“Small in stature, but big in heart,” is how GDFL president Neville Whitley remembers Caldow.

“Any job that needed doing, Billy was there to do it.

“Billy was a great stalwart for the Division 2 sides because they were all country sides.”

Giles says Caldow was a great support to her when she became the club’s first female president at the end of last year.

“He didn’t think he’d see it in his day,” Giles.

“But he was very proud and always giving me advice, and backing me up when I needed it.”

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