Redcliffe Dolphins hooker Liam Hampson made his final journey from the rugby league field and through the tunnel during a fitting tribute at his home ground this afternoon.
About 1000 people packed the Des Webb stand at Moreton Daily Stadium to say farewell to a young man who had an enormous impact on and off the field.
As requested, many wore colourful shirts, and all remembered a cheeky bloke who could light up a room with his contagious sense of humour and positive outlook on life.
His family and close friends carried Liam’s casket through the tunnel and onto the field as the Xavier Rudd song Follow the Sun played.
His parents Lorna and Brett and sister Tiarna paid tribute to someone who loved to help others be the best they could be.
His father Brett said he was the “best son ever”, a “bundle of fun and energy” who would take the time to thank family and friends for coming to watch him play each game.
His mantra to “always turn a negative into a positive” was now their challenge as they grappled with their loss.
“There’s a hole in our hearts that will never be filled,” Brett said.
His mother Lorna said Liam was slow to come into the world, but once he arrived was in a hurry to do everything.
“He was loving, caring, fun to be around and made me a better person,” she said.
“He was perfect in every way.”
His younger sister Tiarna said Liam taught her to be grateful for the little things in life and in listing the things she was grateful for, she shared memories of her 22 years with Liam and promised to continue his legacy.
His mates spoke of a person who was loyal, cheeky, competitive and one-of-a-kind, with a wonderful sense of humour.
Photos from the service - click through
Teammates feel Liam’s loss
His 2022 Hostplus Cup Head Coach Scott Murray spoke to the media before the service and said the squad was still coming to terms with Liam’s death.
“We’ve provided the support. We’re really fortunate here at the club to have some wonderful people who are supporting the playing group and staff, but we’re supporting each other,” Scott said.
“You wake up sometimes and you think did it really happen … whether it’s really sunk in at the moment … I not too sure for us all.
“He was a wonderful young man who helped a lot of people. We’re really going to miss him.
“He was just fun to be around. Everyone enjoyed being in his company. It didn’t matter how you were feeling during the day … I don’t know how many times I walked into the training rooms … you may have had a tough day but if Liam was in the room, everything was OK. He just had that personality that was able to light everyone up.
“We brought him up from Tweed to make a difference to our footy team and he did that, but he made a difference to the community and the people around Redcliffe.”
Scott said Liam had been working with him at Redcliffe State High School as a teacher aid, helping with the rugby league excellence program at the school but also in the classroom.
“What he did down there was amazing,” he said.
Redcliffe Dolphins 2022 Hostplus Cup Captain and teammate Cameron Cullen also spoke to the media before delivering a moving speech and poem during the service.
“He will certainly leave a big hole. I know he was very loved across our playing group and whole club, and the community. It’s a credit to him to be able to move to a new town and have the impact that he’s had up here, not only at our club but at the school,” Cameron said.
“The Dolphins is a club with a rich history and his legacy will live on forever. That shows you the type of person he was.”
As Liam left the field for the last time, he was honoured with a heartfelt Haka before being carried back through the tunnel to Powderfinger’s Nobody Sees.
The words “Nobody knows just how it feels today. Nobody sees how our hearts break" filled the stadium where Liam had played a Grand Final only a few weeks before.
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