ALBURY-Wodonga Bandits legend Allen McCowan will be farewelled in the most appropriate fashion imaginable — a memorial service at the Lauren Jackson Sports Centre.
The service has been booked in for Monday, June 18, starting at 11.30am.
McCowan, 42, died on Thursday from a suspected heart attack at his Lavington home.
Close friend and former Bandits teammate Andrew Moore said both he and McCowan’s wife, Caroline, had agreed the service would be the most fitting way to farewell a man who touched so many lives.
“He always did love to put on a show,” Mr Moore said.
“I woke up this morning, rang Fish (Caroline) and she had the exact same idea.
“He was never big on church and this (Lauren Jackson Sports Centre) is easily the best place for it.
“It’ll be huge — I’ve no doubt the place will be packed to the hilt.
“He did love a crowd, so he’ll come out for one last game.”
As more tributes flooded in from around the country, Bandits captain Nick Payne will honour his friend by wearing McCowan’s No.24 jersey for the next few South East Australian Basketball League games, starting tonight against the Sandringham Sabres.
Payne and McCowan played together on the Bandits’ 2001 championship-winning team and forged a close friendship away from the court.
An emotional Payne said it was the least he could do to pay tribute to a mate who had such a profound influence on his own playing career.
“It’s going to be a huge honour and won’t be one I take lightly,” Payne said.
“He was a great friend, a great mentor and competitor and if I can play with even 5 per cent of what he brought to the court every night, I’ll do him proud.
“This will only be for a few games and then the number deserves to be retired back where it belongs.”