The Geelong Cats have thrown their support behind Jordan Ablett, the wife of club great Gary Jr, after her mother Trudy died earlier in the week.
Jordan Ablett made the news public on Friday evening, while the Cats wore black armbands to honour her during their victory over Port Adelaide.
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The Cats midfielder had left the AFL’s Queensland hub several weeks ago to be with his wife, who is also caring for the couple’s young son Levi, who the pair revealed earlier this year had been diagnosed with a rare degenerative disease.
Jordan shared the tragic news in a Friday night post on Instagram.
“It is with great sadness we share that on Sunday night our precious mum and Nanna, Trudy, went peacefully to be with the Lord, surrounded by her loving family,” she captioned an image of her mum.
“Thank you for your messages of love, care, and support—we are very grateful.
“With love, Keinzley, Nina, Jordan, Michael, Ben, Gary, Presley, Levi and Denver.”
After Geelong’s victory, star forward Tom Hawkins sent a message to the couple during a post-game interview.
“I just want to say to Garry and Jordan Ablett, myself and the footy club are really thinking of you guys at the moment,” Hawkins said.
Difficult year for AFL star Gary Ablett, wife Jordan
Ablett recently revealed his son's health diagnosis in a heartfelt Instagram post.
“Some of you might already know that (my wife) Jordan is caring for her mum as she battles with cancer,” Ablett wrote.
“But what many of you don't know is that our son has been recently diagnosed with a rare and degenerative disease.
— Geelong Cats (@GeelongCats) August 14, 2020
“We thank you for your love and support and want to emphasise just how grateful we are to be Levi's parents. He is a true blessing to us and our family and we love him so deeply.”
Despite enduring such a tough year, Herald Sun reporter Jon Ralph said Ablett was keen to re-enter the league’s hub to see out his final year of AFL football.
“It is remarkable commitment from Ablett to dedicate himself to the cause giving it’s his last year and he wants to win a premiership,” Ralph said.
“He’s been given the tick-off by his family, putting aside that massive tragedy.”
Ablett played his 350th AFL game earlier this season.