Vale - Noel McAlister
Penrith District Rugby League Referee's Association has recently lost one of it's oldest members with the passing of Noel McAlister, aged 81.
Noel joined the Association in 1972 and was graded to the New South Wales Rugby League Referee's Association a year later in 1973, alongside fellow Penrith member Barry Kendall. His graded number is 636 and at the time he was only the 6th member from the Penrith District to achieve this prestigious feat.
Prior to joining the Penrith Association, Noel was a member of Group 10. For several years, Noel and his colleague Brian Warren attended our Association meetings while Jack Harris and Len Manuel would travel to Bathurst to attend Group 10 meetings on behalf of Penrith Referee's. This early exchange was to forge lasting friendships, which also saw former Penrith Junior League President John Mergan and George Grasby join the Association from Group 10. Both Noel and John went on to be instrumental in recruiting members from the upper Blue Mountains. Current Coaching and Development Manager Gary Haines remembers Noel by the support he gave to junior referees in the early seventies when the Association was only in it's infancy.
Noel resided in Katoomba for many years but in recent times had moved to the Central Coast.
On behalf of all members the Board of Management offers it's sincere condolences to Noel's family.