John chose to teach instead of a football career with Newcastle United

FAMILY MAN... John Maloy pictured with his four-year-old grandson Joseph in December last year.
FAMILY MAN... John Maloy pictured with his four-year-old grandson Joseph in December last year.

A JARROW-born sportsman – who chose a career in teaching ahead of playing for Newcastle United – has died at the age of 76.

In the mid-1950s, John Maloy was a talented footballer with Newcastle Boys.

The team was managed by the legendary Joe Harvey, and he played alongside a future Sunderland manager, Lawrie McMenemy.

But when offered a contract with Newcastle’s senior team, John turned it down in favour of a place at a Physical Education teacher-training college in Twickenham.

He went on to teach PE and French, a language he was fluent in, at schools around the Teesside area.

And when he retired 18 years ago he had risen to become headteacher at Our Lady and St Bede School in Stockton-on-Tees.

His sister, Iris Walls, recalled her sportsman brother, who she grew up with in Derby Street, Jarrow.

Mrs Walls, of Wellesley Street, Jarrow, said: “John was a life-long sportsman. He was talented at both football and cricket and he took part in the Great North Run so many times.

“At the time he was offered to sign for Newcastle United, footballers didn’t earn the huge amounts of money that they do now. It was probably a very similar amount to being a teacher then. I think John made the calculation that he’d be finished with football by his late thirties and he could go on teaching much longer.

“John was truly a Jarrow lad who made good after he left the town in 1955. He went up through the teaching ranks to become headteacher of Our Lady and St Bede School and he was also a prominent member of the charitable organisation the Catenians in Middlesbrough for many years, and was president on two occasions.

“He has influenced thousands of children in Teesside, as well as carrying out the charitable work of the Catenians, which included Water Aid for Africa.

“Like myself, John came from very humble beginnings in Jarrow, where parents worked long and hard hours to be able to pay the way for their children in higher education. I can honestly say that John not only repaid our parents for their love and efforts, but also gave an unrelenting contribution to society.”

After his retirement Mr Maloy continued to have an active life and became a volunteer warden on the North Yorkshire Moors.

A father-of-three and grandfather to five, Mr Maloy, who lived in Ingleby Barwick, died earlier this month in Middlesbrough’s James Cook Hospital.

His funeral service was held at the Holy Name of Mary Roman Catholic Church in Middlesbrough on January 15.

Mr Maloy is survived by his wife Kath.

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