AFL star Gary Ablett Jnr and his family are mourning the loss of his oldest sister Natasha during what his club the Gold Coast Suns has described as a deeply distressing time for everyone.
Ablett's sister Alisha posted a heartfelt tribute to Instagram on Friday and said growing up with Natasha and their brothers Gary and Nathan was the "world's best gift".
"Natasha - you were the strongest women Iv ever known with an absolute heart of gold! 1982-2017," she wrote.
Natasha, aged in her mid-30s and the daughter of former Geelong star Gary Ablett Sr, had been receiving treatment in Geelong and is believed to have died in non-suspicious circumstances.
Barwon Health says it has commissioned an independent review into the circumstances surrounding her death.
The Suns say they will support Ablett Jnr any way it can.
"The Gold Coast Football Club is heartbroken today at the loss of Natasha and we send our love and support to the Ablett family and Natasha's wider circle of friends," chief executive Mark Evans said in a statement on Saturday.
"At this time, we are working closely with Gary and his family to support them where we can."
Ablett Jnr's former club has also sent the midfielder its condolences.
"The loss of Natasha is a terrible tragedy for the Ablett family. All of our thoughts are with Gary, Sue, Gary Jr, Alisha and Nathan and the Ablett family at this time," the Geelong club said in a statement.
"To lose a child and a sister is devastating."
Ablett Jr spoke about wanting to spend more time with his family when he recently made a public push to be traded back to Geelong from the Gold Coast.
"My sisters, my brother, and parents all play a huge role in my life, and it's time that I make myself more available to them and others back home," he wrote on his website.
Both the Suns and the Cats have asked that the Ablett family be given privacy as they grieve.