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Vale John Healy OAM

The Parramatta Eels would like to acknowledge the passing of John Healy OAM who was conditioner/trainer for the 1976 and 1977 Grand Final sides alongside legendary coach Terry Fearnley.

John joined the Eels reserve grade coaching as a trainer in 1975 through his friendship with future first grade coach Terry Fernley.  The 1975 Eels reserve grade side beat Cronulla 20-13 in the grand final - coming back from 13-2 down at half-time - to win the club’s second only premiership in all grades over 29 seasons – with a side that included John Kolc, Ron Hilditch and John Baker who would play in the first grade grand final a year. later.

John Healy joined Terry Fernley when he took over as first grade coach in 1976 and was part of the coaching team that saw the Eels make the finals four years straight including the Clubs first two grand final appearances. His responsibility for the team’s fitness ensured that John contributed to the development of our golden generation players like Ray Price, Mick Cronin, Eric Grothe, Peter Sterling and Brett Kenny.  

John went on to be a major contributor across a range of sports especially through his relationship with St Joseph’s College where he lead the fitness training for their rowing, athletics and rugby teams. From his first association in 1980, John contributed to GPS rugby premierships from 1981 onwards including the period where the College won the competition 12 out of the 13 years. John’s contribution to St Joseph’s College led to him being honoured with the naming of the John Healy Fitness Centre.

John Healy was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) in 1998 for service to the community through charitable organisations, and for his work with young men in their sport and personal development.

On behalf of everyone at the Parramatta Eels we would like to sends condolences to John’s family.