DOB: 18 April 1948
Died: 25 September 2021
Debut: Round 2, 1968 against St. Kilda at Moorabbin
Last MFC Game: Round 22, 1973 against North Melbourne at Waverley
Number: 26 (1968-1973)
Leading Goalkicker - 1972
Best First Year Player - 1968
Games: 119 (171 total)
Goals: 169 (242 total)
Statistical categories led
Most games in jumper 26
Most goals in jumper 26
Most marks in a game - 24, Round 6, 1970
Most marks in a season: 238 - 1970
Picked up from Demon recruiting heartland, Parke was first on Melbourne's senior list in 1967 and made his league debuted the next season - being voted Best First Year Player and topping the Melbourne Brownlow count in his debut season.
A high marking centre half forward, Parke was renowned for taking anything that came near him even if his kicking radar was occasionally off. He ran second in the Best and Fairest in 1969 and took the most marks in the VFL in 1970.
Despite training with WAFL side Subiaco before the 1972 season amidst rumours he wanted to leave Melbourne for personal reasons Parke stayed with the club and kicked a career high 63 goals, including seven against Geelong in Round 19.
At the end of 1973 he joined SANFL side South Adelaide, but even after resigning from his job as a policeman Melbourne wouldn't clear him and he returned to the VFL with Footscray in exchange for Charles Pagnoccolo, Garry Baker and John Keast.
He spent two years with the Bulldogs, one at Norwood in 1976 and one at Fitzroy before retiring from the VFL scene. In 1977 and 1978 he played with Riddells Creek, refusing offers from a number of VFA clubs across the two seasons. He then joined Noble Park in 1979 but retired before playing a game due to work commitments.
Parke died on 25 September, 2021, the same day his old sides Melbourne and Footscray played in a Grand Final 2021.
May have joined Bentleigh or McKinnon mid-season in 1978 (Inside Football - 19/04/1979)
Age - 22/03/1972
Inside Football - 06/10/1973
Age - 19/12/1973
Age - 29/03/1974
Age - 04/04/1974
Inside Football - 11/05/1978
Inside Football - 05/04/1979
Inside Football - 26/04/1979
Policeman footballers - Boyles Football Photos
Redlegs Museum profile