Footy icon Michael Tuck has spoken of his family’s pain over the death of his son Shane Tuck, saying: “We’ll never get over him.”
Shane Tuck died on Monday at just 38 after battling mental health problems.
Michael Tuck, who played a record 426 games for Hawthorn, told The Herald Sun that he had been shocked by Shane’s passing. He said that Shane’s fight with mental illness had ended his life, having been unable to admit to and seek help for his problems.
“It’s hard to explain right now … shock, pain,” Tuck said.
“He’s your son and he’s gone. He was a big, strong kid and he just had a few issues and he couldn’t get rid of them and that was the only way out.”
Michael Tuck urged anyone struggling with mental illness to seek help.
“A lot of men think they’re all right and they’re actually not, and the best help they can get is telling people actually how bad they are, and not saying, ‘I’m all right, I’m all right’,” he said.
“It was bit like that [with Shane], he kept it all in because he was a tough, strong man.
“But you’ve got to show … it’s not a weakness, it’s just to express yourself with honesty and don’t try to cover up things.
“He didn’t mean anything by it, he just couldn’t admit he had a real bad problem.”
Michael Tuck said that Shane “was a lot better footballer than what people gave him credit for”.
He was a popular, hard-at-the-ball midfielder who forged his own path at Richmond, playing 173 games for the Tigers. He also had a brief boxing career post-footy.
**If you need help, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.