After a short illness, my Ma Alice passed away on 2/10/2016 at 12.10pm aged 82.
She was smart, articulate, organised, charitable, opinionated and religious.
Throughout her life, she was never a massive football fan but was more or less forced to take an interest because of my involvement.
She heard many a heated debate and argument between my late father and myself regarding Celtic and Middlesbrough but would never get involved.
My Ma was brought up on the South Side of Glasgow and hailed from the Gorbals.
When I was considering my move to Middlesbrough, my Ma arranged for me to talk to Celtic legend Bobby Murdoch, who had went, on to play for Middlesbrough after fourteen glorious years at Parkhead.
Bobby’s mother went to the same Church as my Ma and was more than happy to pass on his number.
As a twenty-four year old getting handed a Celtic legend and European Cup winners, phone number was overwhelming daunting and scary.
I picked up the phone and quizzed him about life in Teesside and about Middlesbrough football club. He was very complementary and the rest is history.
My Ma only attended two of my games throughout my football career. Albion Rovers against Dunfermline Athletic and Middlesbrough against Chelsea at Wembley in the Zenith Cup Final.
While lying in her hospital bed I asked her a few questions, one of them was, what was your proudest moment?
She replied,”You receiving your first Republic of Ireland cap.” This shocked me as I thought it would have been something that she had achieved that would have been her answer.
I find it amazing that she never uttered a word about that don’t forget it was back in 1989/90.
Rest in peace Ma. (Alka)
I hope wherever you end up there is a good singsong.
Thanks for all your guidance support and love along with my Da.
Without both of your support, I would have probably fallen by the wayside.