DOB: 24 October 1913
Died: 31 July 1941
Number: 31 (1936-1940)
Premiership Player 1940
The son of an Italian immigrant, Barassi was lured to Melbourne partly with the offer a job with the Melbourne City Council. Barassi made his debut in 1936 where he competed with Percy Beames and Alby Rodda for the roving position. As such he wasn't a regular senior player, but was often the Redlegs 19th man. His first two games were as a 19th man where he was unused, before coming off the bench in the last quarter of Round 18 for his first taste of senior action.
It was his last league match. In May that year he had been embroiled in a clearance wrangle when Coburg believed that he had applied to cross to the VFA to play with them. Melbourne rejected a clearance, and the case went before the VFA's permit committee. With Barassi in the country the Association permit committee decided to wait until the player himself fronted them for a clearance. He received a provisional clearance but decided to stay at Melbourne and won his only premiership. He was also reported to have been refused a clearance to South Melbourne in the same month.
Enlisting in the army in July 1940, Barassi was stationed at Puckapunyal army camp and had to travel to Melbourne three times a week for the rest of the season to train and play. Leaving for World War II duty almost immediately after the 1940 premiership triumph Barassi served in the Middle East and had achieved the rank of Corporal when he was killed in action at Tobruk on 31 July 1941. Reports of the cause of death are unclear but some accounts have him driving a truck which hit a landmine, while some suggest he was been hit by shrapnel from a mine meant for a nearby harbour.
His son, Ron Barassi, would later join Melbourne under a Father/Son rule established purely to get Ron Jr to the Demons.
|Round 15, 1938
|Round 11, 1939