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Club mourns loss
Picture: Laurie Benson Former Mt Barker coach Merv Neagle.

Mt Barker Football Club is mourning the loss of its only premiership coach Merv Neagle after he was tragically killed in a truck crash last Thursday.

The 1984 AFL premiership player and Essendon veteran of 147 games was killed in Griffith, NSW, not far from his long-term home of Walla Walla.

Neagle led North Mt Barker to a Great Southern Football League flag in 1996 during his three-year reign at the club that finished at the end of 1997.

Then-Bulls player Matt Taylor said Neagle was a “true legend”.

“He was just something that we’ve never had at the club or seen, being a high profile AFL player,” Taylor said.

“He was outstanding and what he brought to the club – he wasn’t just a great coach – he had the club and the whole town up and thriving.”

Neagle’s success at Mt Barker led him back to the town on two more occasions, taking the Bulls to a grand final in 1999 against Royals and coaching the club once more a decade later.

The club will pay tribute to him at their 2012 awards night on September 15.

josh.nyman@albanyadvertiser.com