Mary Marley

ALBION Park’s Mary Marley admits being named in the 2014 Australia Day Honours list is her greatest honour ever.

The 84 year old is still a little nonplussed by the OAM nod, saying she thinks her husband Pat was more excited.

“When I was first contacted to see if I was willing to be nominated I must admit that I wondered ‘why me?’, but it certainly isn’t anything that I thought would ever happen,” Mrs Marley said.

Mrs Marley’s contribution to hockey on the South Coast, particularly her beloved Albion Park Women’s Hockey is substantial. She was a foundation member of the club in 1948 and has been president for 49 consecutive years.

The club’s 40 first grade premierships during their history seems unlikely to be challenged.

As well as being president, she has also filled the role of treasurer and has a long and distinguished career in administration with South Coast Women’s Hockey, including being president, vice-president, selector and manageress of many representative teams. She was also a delegate to the NSW Hockey Association. 

Apart from being a life member of South Coast and Albion Park Women’s Hockey, her crowning achievement came in 1996 when the new hockey complex in Croome Regional Sporting Complex was named the Mary Marley Hockey Centre.

Mrs Marley was also a foundation member of the Shellharbour Sports Assistance Fund, which celebrates its 40th anniversary this year, until she retired from the committee in 2000 and was inducted as a life member of the fund.

She was a volunteer worker for the Albion Park-Oak Flats Rugby League Club for 40 years; volunteered for Meals on Wheels; was a foundation committee member of Albion Park Pool Complex; member of St Paul’s Catholic School Parents and Citizens Committee, and volunteer on the sports program at Edmond Rice College and Oak Flats High Schools.

“I have been very lucky to have had the time to put back into sport and the community and will always be grateful for the family support I have received,” Mrs Marley said.

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