Football players are often admired for their actions on the field, whether it’s an inspirational try saving tackle, a momentum turning hit or a match winning try. For these actions, they become heroes…a part of Rugby League folklore.
While they can be remembered for their actions on the field, it’s more often what they do away from the public eye that determines not only what kind of player they are, but person…what legacy they choose to leave behind.
As far as Rugby League players go, Ky Rodwell is yet to arrive on the NRL scene. The 20-year-old may be quietly spoken, but it’s his Rugby League resume that speaks volumes.
- Australian Schoolboys 2017
- State of Origin NSW Under 20s
- 2018 Rugby League Commonwealth Championships Representative
- 2019 Jersey Flegg Players’ Player
While his achievements point to great things, it’s what he did off the field that’s pointing towards greatness.
In the last four months, Australia has experienced one of the greatest natural disasters of all time while the world watches on in disbelief. Not Ky Rodwell.
Down towards the New South Wales and Victoria border, two of the most fire ravaged states, lies the sleepy New South Wales town of Bombala, the place where Rodwell grew up and called home.
Growing up in a small town, Rodwell understood the devastation that disasters like these fires can have on the community, and his family.
“Well all my family, a few family members got affected from the fires," said Rodwell.
“I lost my Dad’s first two cousins. I’m doing all good, just doing my best to help my family.”
"I’m doing all good, just doing my best to help my family.”
Rodwell refused to remain a spectator. Last Saturday, with his hand on his heart, his hand on the wheel and his boot full of Rabbitohs jerseys, Rodwell made the six hour trip down south. He wasn’t alone either, after rounding up Cody Walker, Kurt Dillon and Bayley Sironen for the ride. Together, they set out to make Bombala better.
"I noticed a couple of kids over Chrissy not doing too well," said Rodwell.
“My parents told me that one of the kids lost all their presents, so then I thought all the kids are on school holidays, I’ll get down there and help them out. There’s plenty of people helping out with the fires but the kids are just stuck at home.”
And help out he did, giving away over 70 Rabbitohs jerseys to local kids alongside Walker, Sironen and Dillon.
“They loved it," Rodwell beamed.
"They all got one jersey each, there was enough jerseys for every kid so they were over the moon. I think there’s a few Souths fans down there now.”
“There were a few parents that were definitely emotional, a couple of them cried."
"There’s obviously a long road ahead to fix what’s happened. They were real emotional and they’re struggling, not really going too well but definitely getting there.
“Sometimes when you’re doing it tough, it’s the little things that can make a difference.”
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