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  1. #1
    Lord of Swine
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    Australia's first NFL convert. It didn't end well.

    Morbid end for first Aussie NFL player Colin Ridgway



    WHILE no one knows how Jarryd Hayne’s US adventure will turn out, it surely couldn’t end any worse than that of Australia’s first player in the NFL.
    Hayne’s NFL bid might have been the biggest sporting story in Australia this week, the tale of trailblazing Colin Ridgway has been grabbing US headlines for decades.
    Melbourne-born Ridgway played three games as a Dallas Cowboys punter in the 1960s only to be gruesomely murdered in the county he’d made his home three decades later.
    His murder, still unsolved, haunts the inner Dallas suburb of University Park.
    The 56-year-old former Carlton reserve was shot at least seven times by an intruder as he entered his duplex after a night out with his wife, Joan Jackson.
    Jackson had driven a separate car home and entered through the backdoor to find her husband in a pool of blood with shooting wounds to the back of his head.


    Ridgeway giving Ron Barassi some tips

    She called 911 and told a dispatcher her husband had suffered a heart attack.
    “His back was the only thing I could see and I grabbed him and I said: “Colin, are you alright?’” she later told a US tabloid TV program.

    “He just kept heaving. I thought he had finally suffered a heart attack or a stroke coming up the stairs.” Jackson’s 911 call raised the suspicions of police and Ridgway’s friends who offered a reward for information relating to the murder.
    Archived reports show Jackson told police she’d been watering flowers out the back of the house and had not heard any shots as she entered the house.
    The couple’s neighbours also said they heard nothing.
    Police attempted to pin the death as a murder-for-hire organised by Jackson.
    But, a year after Ridgway’s death, a judge refused to indict her, leaving the widow free to continue public professions of innocence.

    In one television interview, she told her detractors to “go to hell” and accused her husband of being a drug smuggler to Mexico who had been killed by “business” associates.
    “I’d never seen Colin just falling apart on the inside and literally ... afraid to talk (on the night of his death),” she said.
    “He said `my biggest fear is dieing, Joan’.

    “The only thing that had been dumped upside down in my closet were business records and personal records.” Jackson remains without charge more than 20 years after the murder.
    She’s since reportedly become reclusive and refused to be interviewed by police in 2011.
    A man known to her, Kenneth Bicking III, was accused of carrying out the murder in 1996.
    His arrest came as a breakthrough for police but they had their hopes of a prosecution dashed when an alleged murder confession by Bicking to his wife was deemed inadmissible by a judge the following year.
    Bicking, who had a lengthy violent criminal history, said he’d been set up by his wife who was bitter about a breakdown in their marriage.
    Police hoped an untested hair found at the crime scene would match Bicking’s DNA but were forced to wait for DNA testing to improve because the hair lacked a root.
    After almost 20 years of waiting, police finally received the results they thought could finally solve the case.

    The hair did not match Bicking’s.
    The case is reportedly University Park’s only cold homicide. Bicking has since received two life sentences for the historic kidnap and rape of a young woman.
    Though known for his NFL success, Ridgway was an all-round sportsman.
    An Australian Olympic and Commonwealth Games high-jumper, he became the first athlete to clear seven-foot before accepting a track-and-field scholarship to what is now Lamar University. There, Ridgway was discovered by the Dallas Cowboys and signed to their 1965 team.
    According to archived reports, then coach Tom Landry had tipped him to be one of the league’s top punters, but Ridgway’s games were plagued by several bad punts.
    His football career came to an abrupt end after three games. Before his murder, he opened numerous travel agents and had been married to Jackson for 15 years. AAP ri/djw

    Morbid end for first Aussie NFL player Colin Ridgway

  2. #2
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    harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Played three games and got killed three decades later.

    Don't think the two are linked somehow.

  3. #3
    Thailand Expat
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    I don't see the connection either....

  4. #4
    Lord of Swine
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    There isn't one.
    It's just an interesting story.

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