Vale – Robert “Bobby” Degan


With deep regret, we learnt on the 11 November 2019 that Bobby had passed away at the Gosford Hospital, after battling poor health for some time. Bobby grew up in South Sydney heartland in Redfern, no far from Redfern Oval, before moving some years ago up to Umina, with his charming wife Cathy (dec) and son Dave. He was born in the early 1940s and was part of a loving family with his Mum Merle, Dad Eric “aka Duke” and younger brother Max.

Like any young kid in the Redfern area, they supported the South Sydney Rabbitoh’s Rugby League Team and they went to bed every night with a rugby league ball under their pillows. Bobby quickly developed the skills of rugby league as a utility player who could play any position and embarked on a successful rugby league career firstly with the strong Chelsea United Rugby League Football Club, in the South Sydney Junior Rugby League area, from 1956 to the 1960s. During those years, he played in many Chelsea United premiership-winning teams as a vital team member, was named as Chelsea United Player of the Year in 1963, before being graded with the South Sydney District Rugby League Club in 1965 and again in 1968, where he played five-eight in both 3rd and reserve grade matches. He was leading the Club’s Best Players Awards when he broke his leg whilst playing in a reserve grade match. Many keen judges claimed that Bobby should have played in a premiership-winning South Sydney President Cup teams in the 1960s but missed out probably because the Chelsea United RLF Club dominated team selections by having up to 6 or 7 players in the teams. He then successfully played for the Kingsford Metropolitan Cup team under legendary Coach, Clem Kennedy before moving up to the Central Coast where he displayed his many talents playing for the Wyong Rugby League Club.

No matter where Bobby was he was a very popular man, who enjoyed a cold beer and chat and he will be dearly missed by all of his Mates and will never be forgotten.

Our deepest condolences and thoughts are with son Dave and his Family plus other members of the Family.

At the Ettalong Bowling Club,103 Springwood St, Umina Beach ph 4341 0087 on Saturday 23 November 2019 from 1200, friends’ of Bobby are asked to attend and remember him in a favourite place where he used to enjoy a beer and the friendship of his Mates.


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