FAMILY, friends and directors have all paid tribute to a dedicated Chester FC fan
and volunteer who has died aged 54.
Paul Walker, originally from Duddon, near Tarporley, died on Tuesday at the Countess of Chester Hospital after losing a two year battle with bowel cancer.
Paul, who worked at Cheshire Exhaust Supplies, was an enthusiastic volunteer at the football club. He set up and ran the club shop in the first two years of fan ownership before he became ill.
His partner of 12 years, Amanda Williams, says numerous tributes to Paul have been “touching”. She said: “I have been looking at the tributes to him on Facebook and everyone always said how warm and friendly he was. He was always so enthusiastic about the club and the club shop.
“He was one of those people who stood and talked to anyone and he got to know so many different supporters.”
Amanda said she was often roped into helping with stock checking and their house was occasionally turned into a store room for the club.
She said: “We have had the living room floor covered in T-shirts and mugs going to all different parts of the world. I got dragged into packing things, weighing packages and taking things to the post office fairly regularly.
“He would always spend time working at his computer looking for cheaper places.
He wouldn’t stop thinking about it but he would always involve me in it and we enjoyed doing it for the club.
“When we went abroad he became a walking advert for the club as he would pack all of his Chester T-shirts.”
Paul, who also leaves daughter Jackie and two grandchildren, was diagnosed with bladder cancer last year and had to have it removed after chemotherapy failed.
Shortly afterwards he was readmitted to hospital with a perforated bowel and he was then diagnosed with a rare infection of the deeper layers of the skin down his left leg.
As he was recovering from the infection, he started to have pain and doctors found his cancer had returned in his hip.
Amanda said Paul continued to keep up with club’s results and talked about getting back to volunteering.
“He was always planning what to do to make the shop bigger and better, even when he was in hospital. He would always ask what the score was and talked about going to watch matches again.”
Chris Bodman, a friend and college of Paul who also volunteered in the shop, said: “If you needed anything, you would speak to him. It was a sign of respect.
“He also got me volunteering at the club shop. He was so enthusiastic he roped everyone in. We would be there after a long day at work sorting things out until 10pm and then again the next week.
“The one thing he would never do though is miss the match. He always shut before kick-off and opened after the final whistle.”
Chester FC director Chris Pilsbury said Paul was one of the club’s great unsung heroes. He said: “It was a great shock to me when I was told he had died and I was very upset because he was not very old. He has left a great legacy in the work he did for the club.”
The funeral will take place at Blacon Crematorium next Thursday at noon.