The Mooroopna Cats have boasted for many years about their players who have played all their football days with the club. Tonight we are inducting a true Mooroopna loving player who has spent a great part of his life playing, coaching and representing his club at all levels of the game.
Jeff Vandermeer started his football as a grade sixer in 1986.
He moved through the 3 grades of Mooroopna juniors, winning an under 14 flag, represented the Association and played finals in under 16’s.
Jeff moved into the GVL with Mooroopna under 18s, captained the team and represented the League.
At the age of 18 he played his first senior game with the Cats in 1991. They were delighted with his talent and he soon settled into the team and became a top player who would remain loyal to his club and eventually play 291 games during his career. He would captain his beloved Cats from 1993 to 2004 as well as winning the clubs best player award 4 times and was runner up 4 times.
The GVL selectors soon spotted his class and chose him to wear the purple and Gold GV jumper on 9 occasions. He was a member of the victorious GV side that won the Country Championships in 1994.
Jeff became a most popular player who was much loved by the Mooroopna fans and at the same time greatly respected by opposition teams.
He was assistant coach of the senior team and senior coach of the Cats in 2003.
The Cats honoured him with Life Membership of the club and he was inducted into Mooroopna’s Hall of Fame.
The GVL honoured him with Qualified Life Membership on playing his 200th senior game.
Following his football career Jeff showed his love for the game by coaching juniors. He coached the under 14’s for 5 years including a premiership and the under 16’s for 2 seasons. He also coached Mooroopna Auskick for 4 years. He was coach, assistant coach and runner for the Shepparton Junior Association team.
His love of sport also saw him coaching his daughter Poppy’s Netball and his son Laitham’s cricket team. .
As his son made his way in the football world, Jeff was right there coaching him and giving him a chance to succeed.
His work has paid off as Jeff and his wife Katie are so proud of Laitham’s exciting start to his AFL career with the Western Bulldogs.
Jeff Vandermeer becomes the 5th Mooroopna player to be inducted into the Hall of Fame and the GVL welcomes him as a loyal dedicated member and champion clubman elevated into the Hall of Fame. Well done Jeff Vandermeer.