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Supporters - Bill McIntosh
|Legends and Supporters | Celtic Charity|
Bill McIntoshBill McIntosh was brought up in Castlemilk (Glasgow), and used to watch the Celts religiously. However, his family moved to South Africa when he was still a child in 1965 just as Celtic were to begin their golden age under Jock Stein. He never lost his love for Celtic despite being so far and away, and it helped to underpin the morals he liked to practise in his life like few others amongst us have had to.
He stayed in South Africa ever since and through his love of football and work he got involved in South African football in 1976, when he decided to get a team sorted. This was the days of hardcore apartheid where "coloureds" were harshly discriminated against. The team he formed "Caxton Celtic" was limited in who they could play as it was composed of all black players (all from Soweto), and leagues had strict "all-white" policies. Through jiggery-pokkerry Bill managed to get the side into the "all-white" league. Bill didn't care what colour the players were, but sadly others did, and in this environment Bill had to work against the system for the sake of decency. The only colours that mattered to Bill were the Green & White of the Hoops tops his team were playing in.
Many went up in arms about his side but he wasn't to be stopped. He was told he was crazy. In one hotel the manager had to fudge the rules and class the players as being black foreigners just to be able to get them to be able to stay in the hotel. Disgraceful, but he had to challenge the system in his own way and show what a farce it all was.
He helped to start up the South African Celtic supporters club with Harry McGroarty (from Swaziland) in the early 1980's.... in a GAY BAR (he claims he never knew it was a gay bar at first)! Never orthodox our Bill, but the club was a success where many used to meet up to watch one month old videos of games taped and sent from Scotland. He even says he converted some of the gay people in the bar to Celtic!
Bill never cared about colour or creed as is the Celtic way (so what else was there left for him now to wind up the bigoted conservatives in South Africa?).
Later, he was requested to help out the national football association and kid's football development in Burandi where there was a civil war raging. It was another eye opener for Bill. He didn't want to go but still did. Despite seeing the war raging in front of him, he carried on. He sorted out the associations books (lots of corruption in the national football association) to get them back reinstated in FIFA. The most important part though was to help the people on the ground not just the high end.
Football was important, a big game would mean suspension for the 90mins of the fighting! Through this he also got to see Congo and Rwanda, other areas scarred by civil wars. He went to villages where people hadn't even seen a "white man" before. He took Celtic tops and supplies to these people to help them escape or cope with poverty. He described the conditions as being "like a different Galaxy". He has been involved in getting jerseys and football kit to the youth, in particular Celtic related gear through the Johannesburg Celtic CSC and other contacts.
He is an ecumenical man and has worked with all organisations, secular and religious, all just to help the people. Nothing else matters.
Bill is one of those men who make you proud to be alive and see the real Celtic spirit in action. We are very proud to be able to count him as a Celtic man, and we all could learn from his example.
Bhoys for Africa ProjectAn important task he and his colleagues run is asking for supporters from all over to send over any kit (new, old or torn) to his CSC. They then next travel to the disadvantaged communities to distribute the gear. It's not a final solution, but you can only do as much as you can and he has done more than anyone could have asked.
If you have any kit that you can pass on then please assist.
You can find out more about the work of Bill's CSC by going to www.celticsupportersjhb.co.za
You can send old kit to Bill at this address:
269 Lewisham Rd
- CU 59 Aug 09
Latest page update: made by joebloggscity
, Apr 27 2010, 4:56 AM EDT
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