Pearce Hanley of the Suns in action.
Pearce Hanley of the Suns in action. Jason O'Brien

Suns, Lions to pay tribute after players' brother dies

PEARCE Hanley has been told by the Suns to spend as much time as he needs in Ireland after the passing of his brother Tommy from cancer.

Tommy Hanley bravely fought to hang on long enough to see Pearce and Brisbane Lion Cian Hanley one last time.

The brothers raced home after learning medical experts predicted he had only a week to live.

Last weekend Pearce played his first game for the Suns after departing Brisbane at the end of last season, while Cian made his NEAFL debut for the Lions.

Twice the family thought Tommy had slipped away while the brothers were in transit but he fought back.

The trio were able to spend a few hours together.

Tommy, who was 16, is mourned by his father Andrew and mother Natalie, brothers Andrew, Pearce and Cian and sisters Myfanwy and Caoimhe.

Both the Lions and Suns will wear black armbands this week.

"The Lions and Suns express their sincerest condolences to the Hanley family at this most difficult of times," a joint statement from the Lions and Suns said.

"Both clubs will wear black armbands out of respect for Tommy Hanley during this weekend's games."