The club’s oldest player, Kevin Hevey sadly passed away recently after a long illness on Saturday, October 16. Kevin aged 98 was born on April 30, 1923. He was the 367th player to represent the Brown and Gold first wearing guernsey number 20 in 1946 then number 17 in 1947. Kevin made his debut in Round 18, 1946 against Footscray. \
Back in 2013, Kevin’s family had contacted the Hawks Museum asking could he come and celebrated his 90th birthday by visiting the museum to see the team photos that included his old mates on display. He was also keen to watch the team train and view the new the facilities enjoyed by the currant day players.
Kevin grew up in Ormond and played his early football with the Tooronga Football Club. In 1940 he was recruited to Hawthorn and played 15 games with the 2nd 18. In 1941 with the advent of World War 2, Kevin aged 18 joined the army, and served at Bougainville and New Guinea until the end of the war in 1945.
Football was not completely forgotten in the Armed Services. Recreational football matches were held with a competition formed between the various Battalions that provided some relief to the men serving so far from home in New Guinea. Kevin’s football ability saw him named as captain for his Battalion leading his team to the Inter Battalions Premiership. He cherished the homemade pennant that his team was presented with. One of his teammates, was Essendon star Jack Jones who later played in two premierships for the Bombers.
On his return home, Hawthorn invited Kevin to resume his football career. He made his senior debut as a ruckman in Round 18, 1946 against Footscray. However, he found it difficult to regain the fitness required for senior football due to injuries received during the war. Kevin transferred to Camberwell in 1948 then rejoined his original club Torronga in 1949.
Kevin had strong family links with Hawthorn. He married Ruby, the daughter of long serving
Committeeman, Harry Reid. Kevin’s daughter Marilyn, who accompanied him had brought family photos and her father’s football memorabilia from the war. Of particular interest were photos taken at Club functions including some of her mother, Ruby being crowned as Miss Hawthorn by the Club President Dr Jona in the Hawthorn Town Hall in 1946. Kevin also had his club blazer from 1946 that he proudly showed to all interested onlookers in the Hawks Museum.
As a footnote to Kevin’s first visit the museum organized a return trip for Kevin to meet with Jack Jones. This was the first time they had seen one another since the war. They were delighted to meet again swapping yarns of their days in the Armed Forces and winning the Inter Battalions Premiership.
- Marilyn Bourke with her father, Kevin Hevey who points to himself in the 1947 team photo
- HFC President Dr Jona crowns Ruby Reid, Miss Hawthorn in 1946
- Kevin Hevey, the player in 1947