Grant "Pup" Theelen - "A true Dampier Hero"

Pup began his life in Dampier as a FIFO worker but soon saw the light and moved here in 2015.  He lives with his partner Amy and their two dogs. As a young man he joined the Australian Army, completing a tour of Afghanistan and, in the great Australian tradition, earning his nickname ‘Pup’.

Pup officially joined the Dampier Sharks Football Club in 2015, although he did train with the boys whilst a FIFO worker.  Initially playing on the premier side, he has then played as a ‘resee’ for the past two years.  Even though he is still playing, and those in the know say quite well, Pup took on the role of Reserves Coach in 2018.  Dressed in his signature thongs and his footy shorts, Pup gives up a large portion of his week to coaching the boys on and off the track, and also sacrifices his weekends for both home and away games.  He is 100 % committed to the Sharks success as a club both on and off the oval.

Pup has always been a vocal bloke around the Sharks, straight shooting, honest with only the best interests of the Club at heart. From day one Pup was more interested in what he could do for the footy club than what the footy club could do for him.  Over the years Pup has sourced new sponsorship for the Club and has organised social functions, pre-season competitions and charity events for people and community groups in need.  When it was brought to the community’s attention that one of our residents needed help, Pup organised a group of boys from footy to go and do a busy bee to help clean the place up.

Last year the North Pilbara Football League named Pup the 2018 Coach of the Year.  The award was largely based upon the way he conducts himself both on and off the field.  His natural leadership skills shine through, with the players keen to follow his example.  Pup is a larrikin at heart, who supports his team, his Club and always acts in the best interest of the League. 

Pup was nominated by Scott Bourne