ST GEORGE Illawarra and the entire rugby league community is in mourning following the passing of Immortal and 10-time premiership-winner Norm Provan.
Provan passed away on Wednesday evening, aged 88, after a long battle with illness.
The all-time great's list of accolades is unmatched having won 10 of St George Dragons' 11 straight premierships between 1956-1965 - the latter five as captain-coach.
He was inducted into the newly formed Rugby League Hall of Fame in 2004 and was named in the Team of the Century that marked the game's Centenary in 2008.
He was named an Immortal in 2018 (belatedly in the eyes of many) with a legacy that continues to span generations as one half of 'The Gladiators' image immortalised in bronze and featured on the NRL premiership trophy since 1982.
The image captured by Sydney Morning Herald photographer John O'Gready directly following the 1963 grand final also featured Wests captain Arthur Summons, who sadly passed away last year.
Provan's passing continues a sad year for the game following the passing of fellow Immortal Bob Fulton and legendary larrikin Tommy Raudonikis.
Provan remains the fourth most-capped St George, Illawarra or St George Illawarra player with 256 games after making his debut in 1951.
His career included 18 games for New South Wales and 31 matches for Australia. He went on to coach the Dragons post-retirement, as well as Parramatta and Cronulla.
St George Illawarra chairman Craig Young - who also features on the list of St George premiership-winning captains - led the tributes as the news became public on Thursday.
"Norm Provan remains an iconic and crucial part of the St George's rich history," Young said.
"Norm was instrumental in St George's great run of 11 premierships, a feat we will never see occur again.
"Everyone involved with St George District and the St George Illawarra Dragons wish to send their condolences to Norm's family."
ARLC chairman Peter V'landys also paid tribute, saying Provan will be remembered for his "incredibly humble, kind and genuine nature as a person" as much as his on-field exploits.
"We have lost one of the genuine legends of our game. Norm was revered for his leadership and his courage as a player," V'landys said.
"Sadly, the game has now lost both of our 'Gladiators' but our Provan-Summons Trophy will live on as an acknowledgement of Norm and his good mate Arthur.
"They will be missed, but always remembered."
NRL CEO Andrew Abdo added his voice, labelling Provan one of the most respected figures in the game.
"Norm was a wonderful player and role model,"Abdo said.
"He set high standards for himself and those around him, evidenced by his remarkable achievements.
"As an Immortal, Norm's contribution to the game will live on forever. Today we mourn the passing of a rugby league legend."