Collingwood superstar Nick Daicos reveals the tragedy that befell his family on Christmas Day 2021 – with another sad death to follow a year later
Collingwood superstar Nick Daicos has opened up on the tragedy that struck his family on Christmas Day two years ago.
Just months before making his AFL debut, the Magpies defender and his older brother and team-mate Josh lost their aunt.
‘Walking into my freshman year, on Christmas day, we lost my aunt [after] a battle with cancer, which was terrible for us,’ Daicos told former Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley on Fox Sports.
“It was a really difficult time. Christmas Day was spent in hospital.
Earlier this year, the Daicos brothers mourned the loss of their grandfather, who died days before Collingwood’s first clash against reigning Premiers Geelong.
Nick Daicos has opened up on the tragedy that struck his family on Christmas Day in 2021
Nick (second from left) and his brother Josh (third from left) lost their aunt on Christmas Day in 2021 and their grandfather before the first round this season
“Unfortunately I lost my dedo – my grandfather – on the eve of the first round,” he said.
‘[It was] Quite difficult, but it kind of makes you realize that football is just a small part of your life and there are so many other things going on.
“You want to do well at football, but first make sure the family is okay.”
Daicos and his brother scattered a memento of their grandfather’s funeral on the MCG moments after beating the Cats.
The 20-year-old took off his boot, grabbed something he had hidden inside and kissed his hand before kneeling down to touch the MCG turf.
Moments later, his older brother Josh followed suit.
Initially, it appeared that the Daicos brothers had been playing with their grandfather’s ashes in their socks, but Nick later revealed that they were rose petals from the funeral instead.
“Tonight’s game was in his honor for us,” Nick said at the time.
His older brother added: “It has been a very difficult week for the family. It’s been really hard for us but tonight [the win] it was worth it.
The touching scenes continued in the Magpies hangars as Peter Daicos, father of the siblings – and a big club himself – hugged the players and reflected on what has been an emotional week for the family.
Josh and his brother Nick scatter their grandfather’s ashes on the MCG turf after the Magpies beat Geelong in the first round
“When their mum and dad watch this, they must be absolutely proud of them – not just for the players they are, but for the young men they have become,” Buckley said after the game on Fox Footy. .
In a fitting tribute to their late grandfather, the Daicos brothers both had standout games, with Josh racking up 27 possessions and Nick recording 35 assignments as he assisted in nine of the Pies’ goals.
Speaking to Buckley, Daicos also thanked Collingwood for their support for him and his brother during a testing period for the pair.
“We’ve been through this and we’ve just come back into the family and I think even the club here has created a great culture where we hug and are always there for each other, we encourage each other to be vulnerable and to open up. ,’ he explained.