David Richard HEBBARD


Guernsey Number: 5
Career: 1941
NFC Games: 1
NFC Goals: 0
Debut: v West Adelaide (Norwood) 26th July 1941
Finale: v West Adelaide (Norwood) 26th July 1941


Kalgoorlie footballer David Hebbard played his one game with Norwood while training in South Australia with the Royal Australian Air Force for World War II service which would earn him the Air Force Cross for bravery.

David enlisted in the RAAF on 21 June 1941 and just over a month later found himself at Norwood Oval as a follower in the first ruck, supporting ruckman Tom Price and rover Jack Oatey in an important game against West Adelaide.  Full forward Bruce Schultz kicked two goals in the first quarter to bring his season total to 100 and make history as the first Norwood player to achieve the feat, but then suffered a career-ending knee injury.  Captain Kevin Hardiman chimed in with 10 goals as Norwood won 21.10 to 14.10, displaying the form that soon would take it to its first premiership since 1929.

By then, David was engaged in loftier matters and survived several serious crashes during his 1,000 hours of active service as a navigator.  In the New Year Honours of 1948, Flight-Lieutenant David Hebbard received the Air Force Cross, awarded "for an act or acts of exemplary bravery while flying, though not in active operations against the enemy".  After the war he served with the RAAF courier service to Japan in until his discharge on 10 June 1948.

Meanwhile, he had returned briefly to Adelaide to marry Patricia Cant, eldest daughter of LAC and Mrs Claude Cant, of Grange, at St Michael's Church, Henley Beach, on 28 July 1945.  They settled in Baulkam Hills, NSW, and began their family with two boys.

David was born in Kalgoorlie on 29 January 1914 to David and Margaret Hebbard.  He was educated at the state primary school and the Eastern Goldfields High School.

He was a fringe member of a noted Goldfields football family whose most famous player was William Kirby 'Paddy' Hebbard, captain of WA and captain-coach of East Perth during a senior career stretching from 1914 to 1925

P Robins May 2019

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