Northern Sydney Committee Wellbeing Officers Ken Vessey and Norm Pounder recently paid a surprise visit to see Rod Pethybridge, who is recovering from hip replacement surgery. We saw him six days after his surgery and he was feeling much better after being in the ITC Unit for a few days.
Naturally, we spoke about his rugby league career as a fullback, starting in the Balmain Junior rugby league area before being graded with the Penrith District rugby league club in 1983.
He went to the UK in 1984 and played for Featherstone Rovers rugby league club, then returned to the Balmain District Rugby League Club in 1985 playing six games in First Grade (the permanent 1st Grade Fullback at that time was Balmain/Australian Rep great Garry Jack).
In 1986-1987, he transferred to the Western Suburbs District rugby league club, playing 30 games in First Grade and finishing second in the Rothman’s Medal voting in 1986.
Rod, in the coming months, has to prepare himself for more surgery on his other hip, as well as having some heart issues. He will be ably supported by his partner, Gwen, and his children Kayla, Maddison, Josh and Reid.
We wished him a speedy rehab period, return to good health and back home to Long Jetty and presented him with a Men of League polo shirt. Rod was most appreciative for our visit and wished the Men of League Foundation continued growth and success.
By Ken Vessey