Vale John Pettigrew

Football Federation Australia was saddened to learn that former Socceroo, John Pettigrew, recently passed away at the age of 80.

John Pettigrew was born in Paxton, near Newcastle in Northern New South Wales on 31 October 1934. He attended Cessnock High School and began playing football with Aberdare Rangers junior team. He joined the Cessnock club playing in their youth teams and was one of the reserves at the curtain raiser to the match between the English professional team and Northern Districts in May 1951.

Pettigrew eventually forced his way into the senior team in 1953. He played as a wing half or full back, but his club sometimes switched him into attack when the going got tough. He served in the Australian army and was given leave to play for Cessnock in May 1954, scoring two goals against Merewether in the northern section of the State premiership.

Later in his career John played with Gladesville-Ryde and Prague in the Sydney competition. In all he played 320 first grade matches and ended his career as player-coach of Belmont Swansea in the Newcastle competition.

John received his first full cap for Australia against South Africa on 1 October 1955 in Newcastle at the age of 20 (Cap #150), playing alongside his club captain and centre-half, Kevin O’Neill. He played in both Australia’s matches at the Melbourne Olympic Games against Japan and India, and also in the subsequent match against India in Sydney in December 1956 giving him a total of 4 A-International appearances.

In the 1950s John played against a number of overseas touring sides including Blackpool in 1958 and Heart of Midlothian in 1959 and for Northern Districts against South Africa as well as a number of matches for New South Wales against Queensland, South Australia and Victoria, including the 1960 interstate carnival.

John is survived by his daughter Sharon & son-in-law Peter Rowett and grandchildren Jayden & Damon.

John’s funeral service will be held at Pettigrew’s Funeral Parlour, North West Chapel, 984 Hunter Street, Newcastle West at 2 pm on Tuesday 23 December 2014.