live Infotainment Factory: Ray Warren reveals his pick for Jersey Day

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Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Ray Warren reveals his pick for Jersey Day


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As the voice of rugby league for three decades on Channel Nine, Ray Warren has managed to remain impartial.

Yet that throws up a small problem when it comes to a cause close to his heart: Jersey Day. What footy jumper could 'Rabs' possibly wear?

"I suppose I could put on a NSW jumper and get away with it, but if I crossed the border into Queensland, I'd prefer to turn it inside out and have a Maroon jumper on," Warren told Wide World of Sports.

"I would think Peter Sterling could wear his Parramatta jumper any time and Paul Vautin his Manly jersey. Andrew (Johns) the Newcastle jumper. But in my situation as a play-by-play commentator, I try, desperately, to sound and look unbiased.

"I did play some football – I played for Corindi one year, the Grasshoppers, and I've got a jumper sent to me by them. I've also got a lasting relationship with Young Cherrypickers and I've got one of their jumpers as well. I could wear one of them, not a problem."

Warren is urging rugby league fans, and sport lovers of any code, to wear their favourite jersey this Friday, August 30. Jersey Day is an initiative aimed at raising awareness for organ donation.

The initiative was founded by a brave family after a tragic loss.

Rugby league-mad Nathan Gremmo, 13, was a Year Eight student at Oakhill College in Sydney's north-west. On April 30, 2015, he was hit by a car while crossing the road.

He was placed on life support and died the next day.

Hours before his fatal accident, Nathan wrote on his Instagram account: "You only live once but if you do it right, once is enough."

Such wisdom was shared by his family. Even in their unimaginable grief, they agreed to donate Nathan's organs.

Nathan and his family helped save six lives: five young adults and a baby. They received his heart, lungs, pancreas, kidneys and liver.

More than 3,000 people attended a memorial service for Nathan at Oakhill. His father, Michael Gremmo, told everyone that organ donation meant his son had offered a final gift to others: the gift of life.

Warren, a friend of the Gremmo family, said that their bravery should serve as an example.

"It's something that many of us are too frightened to confront. I can't explain it any better than that. I'm a little bit apprehensive about confronting the subject," Warren said.

"But there's young Nathan donating organs … and six people were going on into life with the chance of living a totally normal and happy life. That's an example of what you can do by donating organs and it started with this young fellow; a lovely kid."

Those six lives are one part of Nathan's legacy. The other is Jersey Day; launched by his mum and dad, Kylie and Michael, and his sisters, Ashley and Annaliese.

It couldn't be simpler. Wear your favourite footy jersey. And have a conversation about organ donation, a personal decision that could save people in need.

"It was a tragedy. What these people have done on the rebound of it is very brave and so commendable," Warren said.

"The whole family has got behind it and a few people like myself have lent a shoulder. Channel Nine's been brilliant. Everybody's been brilliant, actually."

https://twitter.com/jerseydayau/status/1166515017539186688?s=20

At any given time in Australia, about 1,600 people are waiting for a donated organ. The average wait is anywhere from six months to four years. It is an extraordinary amount of time to wait for a life-saving act of generosity.

"The numbers on the waiting list are astronomical," Warren said.

"I once visited a friend of mine; a doctor, believe it or not, which only proves that none of us are exempt. He was waiting for a heart transplant and he was basically confined to bed in hospital.

"It was quite sad watching him every day, waking up with hope and then the hope turned to disappointment when another day ticked by. But there he was, a doctor, and he couldn't do anything about it."

https://twitter.com/jerseydayau/status/1163229798686064640?s=20

About one in three Australians are registered organ donors. Families of registered donors say yes to organ donation in 90 per cent of cases, against an overall national consent rate of about 60 per cent.

Last year, 1,782 Australians had their lives transformed by organ donations, while more than 10,500 benefitted from eye and tissue donation.

Apart from rugby league getting behind Jersey Day directly, Warren believes that another recent development in the game may help to shed light on the cause. Fellow Nine commentator Peter Sterling, a Parramatta Eels great, is just one high-profile former player who has committed to donating his brain.

"Because of this effect of concussion and what it does to the human brain, many more players have decided that they're going to donate their brain to research," Warren said.

"That really might have a knock-on effect, if I can use that pun, for organ donation and of course, Jersey Day."

**Visit jerseyday.com.au and donatelife.gov.au to help to save a life

**Find out about the Nathan Gremmo Community Fund here

As the voice of rugby league for three decades on Channel Nine, Ray Warren has managed to remain impartial.

Yet that throws up a small problem when it comes to a cause close to his heart: Jersey Day. What footy jumper could 'Rabs' possibly wear?

"I suppose I could put on a NSW jumper and get away with it, but if I crossed the border into Queensland, I'd prefer to turn it inside out and have a Maroon jumper on," Warren told Wide World of Sports.

"I would think Peter Sterling could wear his Parramatta jumper any time and Paul Vautin his Manly jersey. Andrew (Johns) the Newcastle jumper. But in my situation as a play-by-play commentator, I try, desperately, to sound and look unbiased.

"I did play some football – I played for Corindi one year, the Grasshoppers, and I've got a jumper sent to me by them. I've also got a lasting relationship with Young Cherrypickers and I've got one of their jumpers as well. I could wear one of them, not a problem."

Warren is urging rugby league fans, and sport lovers of any code, to wear their favourite jersey this Friday, August 30. Jersey Day is an initiative aimed at raising awareness for organ donation.

The initiative was founded by a brave family after a tragic loss.

Rugby league-mad Nathan Gremmo, 13, was a Year Eight student at Oakhill College in Sydney's north-west. On April 30, 2015, he was hit by a car while crossing the road.

He was placed on life support and died the next day.

Hours before his fatal accident, Nathan wrote on his Instagram account: "You only live once but if you do it right, once is enough."

Such wisdom was shared by his family. Even in their unimaginable grief, they agreed to donate Nathan's organs.

Nathan and his family helped save six lives: five young adults and a baby. They received his heart, lungs, pancreas, kidneys and liver.

More than 3,000 people attended a memorial service for Nathan at Oakhill. His father, Michael Gremmo, told everyone that organ donation meant his son had offered a final gift to others: the gift of life.

Warren, a friend of the Gremmo family, said that their bravery should serve as an example.

"It's something that many of us are too frightened to confront. I can't explain it any better than that. I'm a little bit apprehensive about confronting the subject," Warren said.

"But there's young Nathan donating organs … and six people were going on into life with the chance of living a totally normal and happy life. That's an example of what you can do by donating organs and it started with this young fellow; a lovely kid."

Those six lives are one part of Nathan's legacy. The other is Jersey Day; launched by his mum and dad, Kylie and Michael, and his sisters, Ashley and Annaliese.

It couldn't be simpler. Wear your favourite footy jersey. And have a conversation about organ donation, a personal decision that could save people in need.

"It was a tragedy. What these people have done on the rebound of it is very brave and so commendable," Warren said.

"The whole family has got behind it and a few people like myself have lent a shoulder. Channel Nine's been brilliant. Everybody's been brilliant, actually."

https://twitter.com/jerseydayau/status/1166515017539186688?s=20

At any given time in Australia, about 1,600 people are waiting for a donated organ. The average wait is anywhere from six months to four years. It is an extraordinary amount of time to wait for a life-saving act of generosity.

"The numbers on the waiting list are astronomical," Warren said.

"I once visited a friend of mine; a doctor, believe it or not, which only proves that none of us are exempt. He was waiting for a heart transplant and he was basically confined to bed in hospital.

"It was quite sad watching him every day, waking up with hope and then the hope turned to disappointment when another day ticked by. But there he was, a doctor, and he couldn't do anything about it."

https://twitter.com/jerseydayau/status/1163229798686064640?s=20

About one in three Australians are registered organ donors. Families of registered donors say yes to organ donation in 90 per cent of cases, against an overall national consent rate of about 60 per cent.

Last year, 1,782 Australians had their lives transformed by organ donations, while more than 10,500 benefitted from eye and tissue donation.

Apart from rugby league getting behind Jersey Day directly, Warren believes that another recent development in the game may help to shed light on the cause. Fellow Nine commentator Peter Sterling, a Parramatta Eels great, is just one high-profile former player who has committed to donating his brain.

"Because of this effect of concussion and what it does to the human brain, many more players have decided that they're going to donate their brain to research," Warren said.

"That really might have a knock-on effect, if I can use that pun, for organ donation and of course, Jersey Day."

**Visit jerseyday.com.au and donatelife.gov.au to help to save a life

**Find out about the Nathan Gremmo Community Fund here

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