MANLY legend Max Whitehead’s ashes will be scattered on Brookvale Oval before an NRL game this year following his funeral yesterday.
Whitehead’s carer and good friend, Sid Barnes, said it was likely the first Sea Eagles captain would have his ashes scattered at three separate locations: Brookvale Oval, South Narrabeen Surf Life Saving Club and Manly Life Saving Club.
The Manly Daily understands Warringah Council will support Whitehead’s ashes being scattered before a Sea Eagles game at Brookvale Oval.
``It’s early days, but it is going to happen,’’ Mr Barnes confirmed yesterday following the funeral.
Colin Maxwell Whitehead lived a rich life in his 87 years, a life that included modelling as the original Chesty Bond, a career as a chicken sexer, an international wrestling champion, the Sea Eagles’ first captain and, more interestingly, a possible affair with Hollywood actress Mae West.
His contribution to the fabric of northern beaches life was celebrated yesterday when a couple of hundred mourners gathered at St Matthew’s Church in The Corso.
The Sea Eagles were strongly represented, with co-captain Jamie Lyon and second-rower Anthony Watmough pallbearers.
Other mourners included Olympian Melinda Gainsford-Taylor, ex-Sea Eagles Rex Mossop, Max Krilich and Phil Blake, members of both South Narrabeen Surf Life Saving Club and Manly Life Saving Club, along with Mr Barnes.
Mr Barnes delivered an entertaining eulogy that revealed all sorts of interesting career vocations for Whitehead, including a possible relationship with the American sex symbol from the 1920s and ‘30s, Mae West.
``I can’t give you any more background ... he wasn’t the kind to kiss and tell,’’ Mr Barnes said.
Born in Riverstone in western Sydney on August 2, 1922, Max’s family moved to Narrabeen in the late ‘20s.
After losing his father at 11, young Max was forced into employment to support his family.
He worked as a caddie at Elanora Golf Club, travelled to Newcastle to catch rabbits, worked as a chicken sexer for 30 years, dabbled both as a police officer and a pilot and modelled singlets for Bonds.
He started his rugby league career with Narrabeen in 1935, before joining the North Sydney Bears in the early 1940s.
Whitehead switched clubs, to become Manly’s maiden captain on April 12, 1947.
His health declined in his final years and he was cared for by his good friend Samantha Green.
``Three years ago, he proposed to me after a game at Brookie,’’ Miss Green said. ``He lived and breathed footy, and the ocean.’’