Brentford Football Club were honoured to welcome the family of Robert Rowan back to West London on Saturday to perform our Griffin Park Countdown.
At every home match in 2019/20 we are counting down to the final game at Griffin Park. This will include using a special display which will be updated at each remaining league match. The Farewell Griffin Park countdown was changed to 16 at half-time on Saturday by Jackie Rowan, the mother of former Technical Director Robert Rowan, and her family.
Robert died suddenly last November after suffering a fatal cardiomyopathy episode. He had been with the Club since late 2014 and was appointed as Head of Football Operations in the summer of 2015. As well as managing the day to day football operations at our Jersey Road Training Ground, Robert oversaw the strategic direction of Brentford B - the Club’s elite squad of players aged 17 to 21 – before taking on the role of Technical Director early in 2018.
Jackie was joined by other family members at Griffin Park on Saturday as Brentford marked the game closest to the anniversary of Robert’s death – 12 November. Many of Robert’s friends and family were also with us for the game against Stoke City in September. On the day the Club remembered Robert, close to, what would have been, his 29th birthday, we raised awareness of cardiomyopathy as well as promote the screening and research conducted by Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY).
Every week in the UK at least 12 young people die of undiagnosed heart conditions. Since its formation in 1995, CRY has been working to reduce the frequency of young sudden cardiac death (YSCD). CRY – which has former player, manager and Chief Scout Andy Scott as a patron – supports young people diagnosed with potentially life-threatening cardiac conditions and offers bereavement support to families affected by YSCD. For more information on CRY, click here and supporters can donate online here.
Earlier this year, Brentford FC travelled to Robert’s hometown of Kirkaldy, Scotland, to visit his family and friends. Watch Forever 28, our documentary on Robert’s life and legacy, below.