Heartfelt tributes paid at service of thanksgiving for popular footballer from Lowestoft

The funeral of Darren Boyd took place at St Mark's Church in Oulton Broad. PHOTO: Nick Butcher

The funeral of Darren Boyd took place at St Mark's Church in Oulton Broad. PHOTO: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

Hundreds of people gathered to pay their respects to a popular Lowestoft footballer described as a 'much-loved son, husband, father, devoted family man and friend'.

Darren Boyd pictured with his family

Darren Boyd pictured with his family - Credit: Archant

Friends and family packed into St Mark's Church, in Oulton Broad, yesterday (Thursday, January 28) for a service of thanksgiving for the life of Darren Boyd, after the father-of-two died when he was hit by a train on January 2 this year.

A moving poem written by a friend of Mr Boyd was read out at yesterday's service by another of his footballing friends.

Simon West decided to pen the poignant verse as a tribute to how Mr Boyd would often make up little poems on-the-spot in the dressing room as they would prepare for games. It was read out by Waveney FC manager George Millington.

Mr Boyd's wife Sharon said much time was spent choosing the most meaningful poems and songs, which included the hymn – Father Hear the Prayer We Offer – that was sung at their wedding and Joseph Furdeck's poem The Beautiful Game.

Addressing those present at the service, Canon Ian Bentley said: 'This is a death too soon – especially for a much-loved son, husband, father, devoted family man and friend.

'The gap left is great. We will celebrate Darren's life – a life well-lived and remember the joy he brought into this world.'

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After the service a private cremation was held at Gorleston Crematorium, followed by a gathering at the Hotel Victoria.

Ahead of the service, Mrs Boyd said: 'I'm hoping the service itself will be a thank you for his life and for being such a nice bloke, and remembering him as the man he was. Darren will be looking down and saying: 'Don't make a big fuss,' but I hope he is really proud when he looks down and sees how much everyone loved him.

'I think everyone has been really shocked by what's happened – that's probably the biggest emotion.

'All everyone has got to say is lovely things – a lot of customers at Morrisons have sent me things on Facebook even though I don't know them.'

? Would you like to pay tribute to Darren Boyd? Email andrew.papworth@archant.co.uk

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