As the cricketing and wider world grapples with the loss of an icon, this is only the beginning for those closest to him.
With permission from the Warne family, this is their tribute to Shane, in their own words.
Keith and Brigitte Warne
The night of the 4th of March 2022 is when a never-ending nightmare began for our family, for that is the date we lost our much loved and admired son, father, brother and Uncle, “Shane Keith Warne” a tragedy we will never come to terms with.
To find words to adequately express our sadness is an impossible task for us and looking to a future without Shane is inconceivable, hopefully the mountain of happy memories we all have will help us cope with our ongoing grief.
Over the past few days Shane has been honoured with the family being offered a state memorial for Shane by Premier Dan Andrews which the family have gratefully accepted.
The Premier and Minister for Sport and Major Events, Martin Pakula have also advised that the Great Southern Stand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground will be renamed the S.K Warne Stand. We sincerely offer our thanks to the state government and the MCG trust for this honour.
We would also like to acknowledge the support of Prime Minister Scott Morrison for his kind words both personally and on behalf of the country, as everyone knows Shane was an extremely proud Victorian and Australian.
Brigitte and I are most grateful for the many messages of love and support received over the past few days and thank one and all for their kind words of comfort.
We also wish to acknowledge and thank those members of the media who are honouring our request to respect our family’s privacy and who will continue to do so.
To my brother, my best friend, to my Dad, I love you so much. I don’t think anything is ever going to fill the void you have left in my heart. Sitting at the poker table, walking around the golf course, watching the Saints and eating pizza is never going to be the same. But I know all you ever wanted for me is to be happy, no matter what. You just wanted me to be happy, that’s it. So that’s what I’m going to do, try and be happy. I am going to miss you so much Dad and you were truly the best father and mate anyone could’ve asked for. I love you so much Dad, see you soon.
The world has lost someone extremely special to them, who has made a positive influence on their lives and it is incredibly touching to see the outflow of emotion and the amazing tributes to him by friends, teammates, opponents and media. It has been truly heartbreaking, whilst also being sincerely appreciated. Personally, I have lost my nemesis in all sports as a child, the person who smeared vegemite under my nose while he pinned me down giving me the typewriter, my big brother, my mate.
I remember catching the train into the MCG in 1982, sitting in the front row of the Great Southern Stand with our fingers crossed the great Allan Border and Jeff Thomson would get the runs needed to beat England. Who would have thought he would have such a huge impact at the ground in the years to come and that very stand being renamed in his honour. Amazing life. Amazing guy.
Life will forever have a massive hole in it. I will miss our fierce competition on the golf course, poker table and the sledging, seeing who could put the other on tilt first. Love you and miss you big brother.
Dad, I miss you so much already. I wish I could’ve hugged you tighter in what I didn’t know were my final moments with you. And your final breaths were only moments away. I wish I could’ve told you that everything was going to be okay and hold your hand. You are the best Dad someone could ever ask for. Our time was robbed. I want more holidays with you, more laughs where your smile lights up the whole room, more “goodnight I love you SJ, I’ll see you in the morning”, more talks about how our days were and just to feel safe when you would hug me and you would let me know how proud you are of me and how much you love me. You haven’t died Dad, you’ve just moved to a different place, and that is in our hearts. I love you forever, until we meet again.
Dad, this doesn’t feel real and doesn’t make sense that you are not here with us anymore. It doesn’t feel right, you were taken away too soon and life is so cruel. I will forever cherish our final memories together laughing and joking around with each other. We were happy. We were so similar in so many ways and I always used to joke that I got your genes and about how much that annoyed me!! Well now I couldn’t be happier and prouder that I have your genes. I am lucky and will forever be so proud to call you my Dad forever. I love you to infinity and back and I will miss you forever.
“Who bring a light so great to the world that even after they have gone the light remains.”