AFL identity Dean Bailey has lost his battle with cancer.
The Crows senior assistant coach and former Melbourne coach died this morning.
Bailey, 47, was diagnosed with cancer late last year.
He recently attended a training session at West Lakes.
Bailey’s involvement with AFL football goes back to his debut with Essendon as a midfielder in 1986.
After his playing career ended he worked with Essendon as a development coach and later as an assistant coach to Mark Williams in Port Adelaide’s premiership year of 2004.
He was appointed Melbourne’s senior coach in 2007 and was axed from the job in dramatic circumstances midway through the 2011 season.
Bailey joined coach Brenton Sanderson’s panel at West Lakes at the end of 2011.
In a statement this morning, Adelaide Football Club said it is deeply saddened by the passing of a “much loved friend and colleague Dean Bailey”.
“As many are aware, Dean had been battling cancer with his usual resilience and positive attitude, since being diagnosed last November.
“Sadly, he passed away overnight, surrounded by family. He was 47.”
Crows Chief Executive Steven Trigg said Dean would be remembered as a hard-working, family man.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Dean’s wife, Caron and children Darcy and Mitchell,” he said.
“They know that the entire Crows family is here to help and offer support.”
Trigg said few understood the game of football better than Dean.
“He often told how he gained most pleasure from teaching and helping young men become better players and more importantly, better people.
“Dean’s dry sense of humour also provided many priceless moments.
“His influence stretches far beyond the Adelaide Football Club, given his involvement in the game across three states.”
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