Mike valued hard work, talent
HAVING devoted so much to hockey, respected all-rounder Michael McGuire shared one of his most satisfying moments with long-term friend John Cushing.
They sat together, as they often did, admiring what was achieved at the Ipswich Hockey Complex.
Having grown up near and played at the old East Ipswich hockey grounds, Mike was among those who appreciated hard work at club and association level.
"He loved his hockey,'' former Ipswich association president Cushing said, having played, umpired, coached and been an administrator with Mike for many years.
They were also regular spectators sitting together outside Ipswich Hockey's "White (now Purple) Shed''.
"Once he made up his mind on something, he was pretty solid on it,'' said Cushing who played with Mike at Easts before he joined Hancocks aged 26.
"On rules and things like that, he stuck to his guns.
"He became a real dyed-in-the-wool Hancocks supporter.''
The Hancock Brothers, Ipswich and Queensland Hockey life member passed away on Wednesday, aged 74, after a long illness.
"One day we sat over in front of the green tool shed and he said to me 'Did you ever think we would see a complex like this with two artificial surfaces?' and the clubhouse was just being finished,'' Cushing said.
That moment typified how important hockey was to Mike.
The former fullback had grown up at his family home near the old East Ipswich hockey grounds and knew how much work went into relocating to Raceview.
Mike had also been a state selector for 25 years and was chairman of senior selectors for 17 years.
He was involved with the Brisbane Blades and held an Australian A1 umpiring badge.
Among those Mike coached was a young Barry Dancer, who went on to become one of Australia's best players and top international mentors.
Mike also identified many of Queensland's leading players including current Kookaburras coach Graham Reid, current New Zealand women's coach Mark Hagar and current Malaysian coach Neil Hawgood.
Other future stars he helped were Lee Bodimead, Lindsay Woods, Jamie Dwyer, Mark Knowles, Michael Brennan, Dean Butler, Nathan Edglington, Steve Lambert, Grant Smith, Troy Elder, Brent Livermore, Kiel Brown and Jacob Burns.
Before joining Hancocks in 1967, Mike played with Vikings and Easts.
As a fullback with Hancocks, he shared in several premiership successes. Between 1967 and 1969, he scored 24 goals.
The former Railways blacksmith and home builder was made a life member of Ipswich Hockey in 1978 before earning state life membership in 2001.
He was Hancocks club president from 1989-91 and coached many junior and club teams.
TRIBUTES have been flowing for highly regarded Ipswich hockey stalwart Michael McGuire.
Hancock Brothers are planning a minute's silence before tomorrow's A-grade women's (4pm) and men's (5.30pm) matches at Raceview.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with Glenda and his family at this sad time,'' Ipswich Hockey life member and Hancocks official Janette Howells said.
"It is with great sadness the club has lost a true gentleman. He will be missed by all,'' loyal Hancocks club supporter Denis Tierney said.
Mike was also honoured at the Australian under-18 championships yesterday, where players wore black arm bands.
Mike's funeral will be held at 11am on Wednesday at St Mary's Church, Ipswich.
Hancock Brothers players are requested to wear club colours to Mike's funeral.
The QT invites your memories of Mike.
Email your thoughts and tributes to: firstname.lastname@example.org