Shane Tuck’s father Michael urges men to talk about their mental health after former Richmond player’s death


Shane Tuck’s father Michael Tuck has spoken about his son’s death and the “issues” he faced throughout his life.

In an interview with the Herald Sun, Michael Tuck said his son “kept it all in”, and urged others to speak up and share their mental health problems.

“He was a big, strong kid and he just had a few issues and he couldn’t get rid of them and that was the only way out,” Mr Tuck said.

“[Shane] was bit like that — he kept it all in because he was a tough, strong man.

“It’s not a weakness, it’s just to express yourself with honesty and don’t try to cover up things.

“He didn’t mean anything by it, he just couldn’t admit he had a real bad problem.”

Shane Tuck’s death at 38 years old came as a shock to former teammates and football fans across the country.

He belonged to a famous AFL family, with his father Michael a legend of the Hawthorn Football Club, with whom he won seven premierships, including four as captain.

His brother Travis also played for the Hawks, and he was a cousin of Geelong superstar Gary Ablett Junior and nephew to Cats great Gary Ablett Senior.

Former teammate Jack Riewoldt said the entire Richmond squad — currently together in a hub in Queensland — was banding together to deal with the grief.

“There’s a handful of us that played with Tucky and admired him and loved him as a mate and as a player, but it’s impacted our staff as well,” Riewoldt told Fox Footy’s AFL 360 on Tuesday night.

“Our medical staff spent a lot of time with Tucky. Any footballer can attest that the hub of an AFL club is the medical room, and he was so funny and just always spent time in there.

“Guys used to love winding him up, but he was just a character.

“It’s been a day of phone calls and reminiscing. I’ve been chatting a lot of ex-teammates just about how they’re dealing with it.

“A lot of my ex-teammates are involved in other football clubs and we’re all sort of spread around Australia.

“But just to share a memory and a moment and a phone call and even a story, just about how much we loved Tucky — it’s part of the grieving process that we’re all going through at the moment.”

A Richmond AFL player tries to kick the ball with left foot with a Tigers teammate and Port Adelaide opponent next to him.
Shane Tuck played 173 games for Richmond between 2004 and 2013.(AAP: Joe Castro)



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