R.I.P. Don Elmer

Written by Steven Hurley. Posted in Latest News

Published on July 10, 2017 with 1 Comment

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of club great, Don Elmer.

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As a player Don racked up 116 games in a career spanning 10 years between 1962-72. He was Reserves captain-coach in 1965 and 1966. In 1967 he became non-playing coach and led the boys to the E Section Premiership – Old Trinity 14.9-93 degeated ANZ Bank 7.11-53 – the Club’s first ever premiership. He was also Club Secretary! Appropriately he was the 1967 Best Clubman. After handing over the Reserves coaching role to Terry Hense in 1968, Don resumed playing, including being a member of the 1968 Reserves premiership team.  He retired at the end of 1972.


Impressive as they are, the records don’t really capture the influence Don had on establishing the foundations of the Club that exists today. The legendary core of the Club in the mid 1960’s was John Weatherson, Warwick Smead, Graham Humphreys and Don. They extricated the Club from its primitive facilities at Yarra Bend into brand new clubrooms at Leigh Park, established the reserves team, and appointed our first professional coach in Jack McLeod.


Don leaves behind his wife, Judy, and his five children, Cameron, Lachlan, James, Jessica and Dougald.

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  1. I first came into contact with Don when I arrived at the OT’s in 1967 and ran headlong into his philosophy of “we win at all costs.” Don refused to accept that we were in the competition to make up the numbers and this ruthless attitude rubbed off very quickly on the teams he coached and also the Club in general. The T’s very quickly gained the respect of any team we came up against and Don was integral to the launching of the Club on its path to A Grade.

    Don literally bled green and gold


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