Townsville and District Rugby Union

VALE Mike Carney

Last Friday the Townsville and District Rugby Union received the news that long term sponsor and Townsville icon Mike Carney had lost his battle with Prostate Cancer. Mikes passing on the eve of the TDRU’s 50th Anniversary Celebrations saw moving tributes to him with the Brolgas teams donning the black armbands at the North QLD Country Champs along with a minute’s silence prior to the Under 19s and Mens games kicking off. The TDRU had planned to present Mike with a Club Legend Award alongside fellow Major Sponsor and TDRU board member Adrian Gabrielli as a small token of appreciation for over 20 years of partnership with local Rugby.


When Mike’s local Business began its sponsorship with the TDRU in 1995 it was a small Senior Competition with only three divisions and one staff member. The competition was battling hard to survive with little junior participation and a struggling Under 19 competition.

Development Officer at the time Terry Shiells garnered the small agreement with Mike Carney for the contribution of one sponsored vehicle for the TDRU staff member to visit the regions schools and promote the game.

Over two decades later the TDRU competition features fourteen divisions of senior and junior competitions with over 2000 registered players and five staff including three development staff. Whilst Mike Carney Toyota’s contribution is now the supply of five vehicles to the TDRU as part of a partnership including the naming rights to the TDRU Facility in Currajong (Mike Carney Toyota Park).

Over the years, Mike has been much more than a Rugby sponsor to the local Rugby community, he has also been a friend and a mentor to many. Last year Mike was presented with a framed jersey from the TDRU to thank him and his business for 20 years in support of Townsville Rugby, this recognition along with Mike being announced as one of two TDRU Club Legends at the TDRU 50th Anniversary Celebrations cements his place amongst the Rugby Community as an icon who will always be remembered.

The TDRU Executive, Staff and Clubs would like to extend their condolences to the Carney family and friends as well as the staff at Mike Carney Toyota after his passing. Mike’s Funeral Service will be held at Ryan Community Centre (Morindo Drive, Kirwan) on Sunday the 30th of April at 2pm.




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