Heath & Ray Portrait

Dad, Edward and Raymond are the three names I have for my old man. Dad was the standard name from when I could first talk until I was 13 or 14. Then I discovered his second name is Edward and so for no particular reason it stuck for around 5 years. Now I call him Raymond, his first name, very formal and official but he responds to them all the same.

Me and my dad have a few common interests; sport (mostly footy), racing and of course our family. Football has always been a constant with us from a very young age and I have memories of him taking me to training, waking me up early for Sunday games and making sure my boots were cleaned the night before games (or I wasnt allowed to play).

Raymond and I talk before and after every game and he’s always there if I need advice or guidance. The ultimate moment in football for me and my dad was after our grand final win in 2010. I saw him in the rooms and straight away gave him my medal ‘cause he lost 4 grand finals, so that was a very special moment for us. 

Horse racing is another one of our loves. Trips to Yarra Glen races every year started my love for it, thanks Dad.... not. Phone calls and tips most Saturdays followed by Sundays with the sharing of all the hard luck stories is a very regular occurrence. We also had a rippa visit to Macedon Lodge (Lloyd William’ stables) last year was a great bonding experience for both of us.

Raymond and I, like any father son combo (let alone a kid with ADD) have had our ups and downs, arguments and disagreements but I know I am very lucky to have such a close family. My older brother lives in Sydney and my older sister in Geelong but that doesn’t stop us. I think I have it pretty good to have such a close knit and loyal family with the ringleader Raymond showing the way and a lot of his good traits hopefully rubbing off on me.

My old man and me don’t spend every day together and speak only a couple of times a week but I believe the reason we are so close and have been for so long is because he instilled in me the characteristics that made him what he is today…loyal, dedicated and caring.

I think if I’m half the man he is I’m going to be in a pretty good place.

My dad, my mate.

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