AFL to hold pre-game tribute for Jesse Baird and Luke Davies in season opener

Umpires and players will come together to pay tribute to Jesse Baird and Luke Davies, before the Sydney Swans and Melbourne Demons kick off the AFL season at the SCG tomorrow night.
AFL CEO Andrew Dillon announced today that players from both clubs and umpires will gather at 7.27pm, three minutes before the opening bounce, and wear black armbands in a mark of respect for the allegedly murdered couple.
The tribute will mark the memory of Baird, who was an AFL goal umpire and “a popular and respected member of our AFL umpiring family”, and his partner Davies, a Qantas flight attendant who was a lifelong Swans supporter.

The bodies of Baird and Davies were found on a rural NSW property on February 27, more than a week after they were allegedly killed in a Sydney home by serving police officer Beau Lamarre-Condon.
The senior constable has been charged with two counts of murder and remains behind bars after being denied bail.
Police allege he hid the bodies at a property in Bungonia.
He later revealed the location of the bodies to police while being held at Silverwater jail.

Jesse developed many close friendships his umpiring career and time at the AFL,” the AFL’s statement read.
“He was such a vibrant, fun-loving person, who was deeply committed to umpiring.”
Baird began goal umpiring in 2011 in the Northern Football and Netball League (NFNL), before moving to Queensland in 2017.

Baird made his debut on the AFL umpiring list in March 2020.
He was named the AFL’s most promising goal umpire in 2020 and 2021, winning the umpiring association’s Brian Pratt Medallion two years in a row.
In 2023, Baird moved to Sydney for work and to continue his AFL umpiring career, which spanned 62 AFL matches, including two finals.
“A tribute pre-game to both Jesse and Luke tomorrow night is a small way for us all to reflect and remember two young men during what is a very difficult time for their families and friends,” Dillon said.
“The AFL acknowledge and respect both families who are experiencing untold grief and so are particularly grateful for their support of the tribute.”
Since the disappearance and death of the couple, tributes have flowed from their friends, family and colleagues around the country.

Source:9News

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