Warning: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are advised that this story contains the name and image of a deceased Indigenous person.
The South Sydney Rabbitohs are mourning the passing of premiership-winning player Kyle Turner who passed away yesterday (Friday), aged 31.
Mr Turner, Rabbitohs first grade player number 1100, played 130 grade games with the Rabbitohs, including 91 first grade games, between 2011 and 2019. He won an NRL premiership in 2014, playing for South Sydney in the Grand Final victory to claim the Club's 21st premiership. He represented the Indigenous All Stars on two occasions in 2015 and 2017, as well as Country Origin once in 2017.
A proud Kamilaroi man and Coonabarabran Unicorns junior, Mr Turner joined the Rabbitohs in 2011, the year in which he won the Rabbitohs under 20s Player of the Year Award. He will be remembered as a gentle giant with an infectious smile and a crowd favourite amongst the Rabbitohs faithful, as is evidenced by his award as The Burrow Player of the Year in 2016.
Rabbitohs CEO Blake Solly said Mr Turner will be remembered very fondly by everyone connected with the Club.
“Kyle was an amazing human being,” Mr Solly said.
“He epitomised the country boy Rugby League player. He was such a tough, uncompromising player on the field, yet a lovely, generous man off the field.
“Over his nine years with our Club he contributed a lot of time to Souths Cares and was very popular amongst his teammates, colleagues, our Members and supporters alike.
“We offer our full support to his family and friends at this very difficult time, and he will always be remembered at our Club as a man that delivered a premiership to the Rabbitohs, but also a man that connected deeply with his communities.
“We will hold him close to our hearts for the rest of this season and in the years to come. Vale Kyle Turner.”
The Rabbitohs will wear black armbands in tomorrow's game against the Knights, and his number 15 jersey will be retired and honoured on the interchange bench during the match for this week's game.
On behalf of everyone connected to the Rabbitohs, we offer our deepest and most sincere condolences to the family and friends of Kyle Turner.