The Wollongong Hawks are rallying around homegrown star Tyson Demos after the sudden death of his dad Kon this week.
Mr Demos, 54, died after collapsing at work on Monday afternoon.
The ‘‘larger than life’’ builder was well known in Wollongong for his passion for sport, having a stint in the national rugby league competition with the North Sydney Bears.
Wollongong Hawks chairman Peter Bahlmann yesterday said Mr Demos would be sorely missed.
‘‘On behalf of Wollongong NRE Hawks and all Hawks members and fans, I want to express our deepest sympathies to Tyson Demos and all his family on the sudden loss this week of Tyson’s father,’’ Mr Bahlmann said.
‘‘This is a tragic loss for Tyson and his family.’’
Mr Bahlmann also paid tribute to Mr Demos as a ‘‘great supporter of the Hawks and of basketball in this region’’.
Mr Demos also had a passion for rugby league and the Illawarra.
He was a strong supporter of a number of Illawarra sports including boxing.
‘‘Kon was a very passionate rugby league person but he was also a very passionate Illawarra person,’’ Illawarra Steelers life member and director Bob Millward said yesterday.