News

Andrew Hammer pavilion will be moved from former Shepp High to Kialla

By Madi Chwasta

When you lose a son, the pain never goes away.

Ross Hammer thinks about his son Andrew Hammer, who died in a shooting accident 15 years ago, every day.

“We've always got those feelings,” he said.

But some moments give the family comfort.

Like when they used to drive past the former Shepparton High School grounds and see the sports pavilion dedicated to him.

The Old Students Cricket Club erected a player shelter in Andrew's memory at the school's Lightfoot Oval in 2006, a year after about 1000 people attended his funeral 15 years ago.

“It was nice seeing the pavilion standing there,” Mr Hammer said.

“It means a fair bit to us as a family.”

But when Shepparton High School was demolished to make way for the new Greater Shepparton Secondary College, Mr Hammer wasn't sure what was going to happen to his son's memorial.

“I was worried that the pavilion would have been lost in the system or seen as insignificant in the new school construction,” he said.

Official Opening of the Andrew Hammer player shelter in 2006: Vince Gagliardi and father Ross Hammer at Lightfoot Oval at Shepparton High School.

But with the work of the club president Tim MacLaughlin, the Department of Education, and builders Hansen Yuncken, the pavilion was lifted by crane from the school site, and carefully dismantled at no cost to Mr Hammer.

It was placed on a truck, and was taken out to Old Students Cricket Club's new home at Kialla.

While Mr Hammer won't be able to drive by and observe it in the same way, he is comforted knowing it will be used by young cricketers — just like Andrew was — in the years to come.

“My family has been part of this wider community for many years,” he said.

“We are grateful the pavilion will continue to serve our club members.”