Paul Green's wife gives incredible tribute at NRL icon's funeral

·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
Paul Green's family and friends gave a stirring celebration of the NRL icon's life when he was farewelled in Queensland on Tuesday. Pictures: AAP/Getty Images
Paul Green's family and friends gave a stirring celebration of the NRL icon's life when he was farewelled in Queensland on Tuesday. Pictures: AAP/Getty Images

The life of NRL icon Paul Green has been celebrated in a moving in a moving ceremony in which the impact of his life has been remembered in beautiful detail.

A series of moving tributes to the former NRL player and coach were given by the likes of North Queensland Cowboys great Johnathan Thurston and Maroons legend Wally Lewis after Green's death earlier in August.

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The most stirring words came from Green's family, who spoke of how their husband, father and brother had always supported their endeavours in life, and approached his own with a sense of fun unique to him.

A qualified pilot, Green was also a capable violinist, excellent student and recent Harvard Business School graduate.

While his footballing genius, as both a player and coach, was lauded it was his qualities as a father and exploits elsewhere that his family and friends reflected on.

"He had that capability of captivating people, whoever his audience," wife Amanda Green told the audience.

"I could honestly talk about him all day, every day.

"I knew from that moment (I met him) there was something special about this man ... intelligent, engaging, cheeky and so much fun.

"He truly was the most amazing husband, who I'm going to miss dearly.

"We had the deepest love and happiest marriage ... I loved you yesterday, I love you today and I'll love you forever."

The hearse, pictured here on the oval during the public funeral service for Paul Green at Kougari Oval in Brisbane.
The hearse is seen on the oval during the public funeral service for Paul Green at Kougari Oval in Brisbane. (AAP Image/Jono Searle)

Many of those the 49-year-old played for, with and against along the way gathered at Wynnum's Kougari Oval on Tuesday to farewell their mate.

John Lang, Brad Fittler, Trent Robinson, Andrew Ettingshausen, Anthony Minichiello, Steve Renouf, Wendell Sailor, Lote Tuqiri, Luke Ricketson, Todd Payten, Neil Henry, Brad Thorn, Kevin Walters and even AFL great Leigh Matthews all attended.

Thurston and many more of Green's 2015 premiership side also paid their respects, while Green's casket did a final lap of the oval to complete the ceremony.

Former NRL players Allan Langer, Lote Tuqiri and Wendell Sailor, pictured here at the public funeral service for Paul Green.
Former NRL players Allan Langer, Lote Tuqiri and Wendell Sailor are seen on arrival to the public funeral service for Paul Green. (AAP Image/Jono Searle)

Paul Green's life and achievements recognised in touching celebration

Son Jed remembered the bonfires and fishing trips and said he was the "best dad ever" while daughter Emerson said her father taught her not to worry about what other people thought of her.

"If there was any music playing I could count on my dad to pull me onto the dancefloor," she said.

Good friend Mark Beitz said Green was the "smartest man I ever met, in so many ways".

"You've been taken way too early but what you did in 49 years, most of us won't do in many lifetimes," Beitz said.

He said loyalty, perfectionism, intelligence, determination, self belief and fun were the themes he lived by.

"Holy Moly he had self belief at the highest level ... you were one of a kind."

Paul Green was not only remembered for his achievements in rugby league, but also the impact he had in the many other facets of his life. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)
Paul Green was not only remembered for his achievements in rugby league, but also the impact he had in the many other facets of his life. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Queensland rugby league legend Wally Lewis said Green would leave an underrated legacy on the game, having never allowed those questioning his ability to hold him back.

“When we heard the news it was a shock to everyone. If you ever need help, please ask for it. We are big tough footballers but we need help as much as anybody,” he said.

“I am still gobsmacked he is no longer with us.

“I still remember some people question if he would make it as a coach but I never had any doubt he could make it.

“He was one of the toughest, most tenacious players I saw.

“He won a premiership for the Cowboys and he will always be gold to the people of North Queensland.

“He is a man who will never be forgotten.”

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636, Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

With AAP

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