Balancing his football commitments with work at the family market garden, Dennis Lorenz was dubbed ‘Celery’ by Norwood team-mate Brian Norsworthy, and the name stuck.
Dennis came to Norwood from Athelstone juniors and made his mark as a full back and a ruck-rover/defender. His start was bitter-sweet - defeat in two successive Senior Colts grand finals, but with the consolation of being named Norwood’s best player in the 1961 loss and the honour of being vice-captain in 1962.
‘Celery’ was a solid contributor to the Norwood Reserves over the next five seasons, during which he kicked 14 goals in 85 games. In 1966 he at last tasted premiership success, as a ruck-rover in Norwood Reserves’ 12.28 to 3.7 grand final triumph over Port Adelaide under captain-coach Gerry Harrison.
Work restricted Dennis’s training opportunities and he played only one league game - in 1964 against a rampant South Adelaide which, in beating Norwood 8.11 to 5.7 at Norwood Oval, showed the form that would take it to its first premiership since 1938.
Dennis missed 1968 through injury and then returned to the Athelstone Football Club, playing there until a knee injury near the end of the 1969 season forced him into retirement.
Dennis Lorenz was born on Guy Fawkes’ Day, 5 November 1943. He produced a few fireworks on the football field, grew celery and with his wife Jill raised three sons, Darren, Jamie and Troy.
P. Robins, G. Adams Jan 2020
* We thank Dennis Lorenz for his picture and input