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Rest In Peace David Church, father of Gary Church - funeral Tue Nov 14th

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RIP Dave

RIP Dave

And cheers Jim for representing RAWK


I mentioned that Peter Carney gave a wonderful tribute to Dave during the service. I asked him if he would mind me posting his words here for you all to read. He has kindly sent me the transcript and I am pleased to copy it below. It was a great mix of humour, sentiment, pathos and remembrance. Nigh swan, lid.


Dave Church was a friend of mine. I came to meet Dave through his son, Gary.

Me & Gary once went to the same football match, which to me makes me & Gary mates. The match only lasted six minutes. Gary left one way, I left another.

To me. We went in as mates, we left as mates, we’re still mates and we always will be mates. To me.

Being a mate of Gary made me a friend of his Dad, Dave.

I was almost thirty years of age, when me and my mates went to that six minute match. In nearly thirty years since then, me and Dave have been back many times to that same six minute match.

Being my friend, Dave gave.

He gave me a smile when we met. Gave me a smile to show he was glad to see me, glad to give his time, glad to give his attention.

Dave never asked for or expected anything back & he gave me more than I could ever give back.

Dave gave.

A smile, time, attention, knowledge, experience, advice, a laugh, veg off his allotment.

Dave gave. Dave gave because giving was his goodness & his gift.

And Dave shared.  He shared because sharing was his pleasure.

Dave gave for the goodness of giving and shared for the pleasure of sharing.

Dave gave support when you struggled, gave assistance for your troubles.

Despite his own troubles, Dave gave.

For all the troubles we went through and shared together, Dave gave me support & strength to survive that six minute match.

And I’m grateful for that.

Dave wasn’t at the six minute match but he saw what happened, clearly.

As it happened. Instinctively, clearly.

Instantly, he had a vision of what happened at the six minute match.

He consistently, constantly and continuously kept his clear vision. From day one to the end of his days.  Through all the inquiries and deliberations, his instinct, his intelligence, his inquisitive nature, his indomitable spirit, carried his clear vision.

To Dave, it was clear.

Clearly a cover up.

And he told anyone who would listen.

It was clearly a cover up.

Clearly a cover up of killing.

And nearly thirty years later, a jury agreed.

Unlawfully killed.

Dave was determined, dedicated, diligent in dissecting details and dynamite in exploding the devious ways of duckers and divers who tried to divert him from what Dave could see had happened.

They were creating a cover up for unlawful killing, but Dave could see what they were up to.

They were blaming survivors and supporters but Dave could see what they were up to.

Dave listened to, and got great comfort from, what Gary’s gang said about the six minute match. He listened and encouraged survivors to speak of our experience.

For our own good, and for the good of the victims who were killed.

Dave’s way was;

“You’ll feel better saying it how it is, instead of hiding it away.

If you get anything wrong let them try to prove it.

But you haven’t done anything wrong so say it as it is”.

Dave could see what survivors said happened, happened.

Dave could see that Gary, the victims, the survivors and the supporters bore no blame for the blunders that caused the catastrophe.

Nearly thirty years later, a jury agreed.

The survivors and supporters did not contribute to the dangerous situation.

For nearly thirty years, Dave refused to accept the official, or any official’s, version of events. Or their contrived verdicts.

Or the deceitful diversions they devised to avoid the perpetrators facing their peers or their punishment.

He challenged them all, and their accomplices, every chance he got and he double bluffed the legal lizards that littered the trail to the real truth or tried to lead him down blind alleys. 

Dave Church never suffered fools.

Especially fools who tried to pull the wool over his eyes.

Or wore a wool wig.

Or sat on a woolsack.

But he reserved a real rage for the ridiculous rantings of the rancid rag and the sheep that read it.

Dave and his wife, Maureen, were founder members of the Hillsborough Justice Campaign. When the name was chosen, Dave took great pride in pointing out that he and Maureen were the first to be identified as the Hillsborough Justice Campaign, lobbying for support at the 1990 Labour Party conference in Blackpool.

Personally, I will always be grateful to Dave, and his wife Maureen, for giving me support, reassurance, strength & inspiration. They were both a great help for myself, and many other survivors, trying to cope with the turmoil and troubles the six minute match served on us.

The day that Dave died was a sad day, but contrary to the catastrophic calamity that caused our coming together, Dave will live on in my mind as a determined dad, a faithful friend, a dapper dresser, an avid allotment activist, and a man with a smile in reserve (unless his tomatoes failed).

Dave will live on in my mind as a friend who gave & I’m grateful for all he gave me (except his green potatoes).

If Dave should leave a legacy.

Let it be a legacy that will linger and last.

A legacy of the way Dave lived his life.

Dave gave.

Peter Carney. 14/11/17

the 92A:
Hillsborough destroyed so much but ironically it also brought out so much in those who fpught against the odds and battled for justice. Peter's words convey the humanity and respect he had for Dave but also reveals his own humanity and comradeship


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