U.S. Hibee in RGFC 2024!

A U.S. Hibee made a 3,462-mile trip from Arlington to Edinburgh to participate in the 2024 Ron Gordon Football Challenge!


Doug Dowling of Arlington, Virginia recently flew to Scotland to take part in the Ron Gordon Football Challenge, honouring our late chairman, Ronald J. Gordon.


The 71-year-old, a friend of the Gordon family, developed a connection with Hibernian F.C. following their purchase of the club in 2019.


“I watch match results and highlights on YouTube. The Hibs fan base in Arlington is thin, but I’m trying to grow it by spreading the word!” Doug said.


For Doug, the decision to participate in and fundraise for the Ron Gordon Football Challenge was personal and immediate.


“As a friend of the Gordons and a cancer patient myself, I was devastated learning of Ron losing his battle with cancer. When I first heard about the Ron Gordon Football Challenge, there was no question whether I would participate.”





Demonstrating remarkable resilience, Doug completed six months of chemotherapy on 20 June and boarded a plane to Edinburgh the next day.


Upon his arrival to the capital city, Doug was taken aback by the warmth and dedication of the Hibernian community, and he was delighted to hear how his fundraising will support the Foundation’s work within the community.


He was particularly taken by our Team United programme for neurodiverse young people as his son, Michael, had participated in Special Olympics football in Virginia for many years.


“I was struck by the dedication, passion, and enthusiasm I witnessed in meeting the staff of both the Community Foundation and the football club” Doug remarked.


The day at HTC was everything he could have hoped for as well, with a blend of excitement and nostalgia pushing him through the hour-long match.


“Fun, fun, fun, except of course for the part where I discovered what I’m no longer capable of on the pitch!” he said with a laugh.


Despite the physical challenges, Doug found immense joy in the camaraderie and support from his teammates, making the event a memorable experience.


When asked about future participation, Doug’s enthusiasm was clear:


“I’ll be back next year if I can sort it out on my calendar.”


Doug Dowling’s journey from Arlington to Edinburgh highlights the unifying power of football and the strong sense of community within the Hibernian family. His story is a testament to resilience, friendship, and a shared passion for the sport.


The Hibernian Community Foundation is honoured to have individuals like Doug who exemplify dedication and community spirit. As we look forward to future events, Doug’s presence and determination will continue to inspire us all.





Photo Credit: Simon Wootton

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