Boaters' tribute to Mick

Friends of Mick Berry at Reedley Marina
Friends of Mick Berry at Reedley Marina
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Boating enthusiasts from Reedley Marina, who had been fund-raising to buy a defibrillator for the site, have been shocked after a popular boater later died from a heart attack.

Retired bricklayer Mr Mick Berry, who lived on a barge at the marina with wife of 40 years Pat, suffered a heart attack and later died at hospital in Blackpool.

Now, friends, relatives and workers at the site off Barden Lane have stepped up their fund-raising efforts to try and raise the £800 for a defibrillator.

Mr Berry (69) originally from Church, Accrington, had lived at the site since it opened in 2008 where he was a popular and colourful character.

Mrs Sharon Ruth, who works in the marina’s Kingfisher bistro, said: “We have been trying to raise funds to buy a defibrillator for the marina, and if successful two because it’s a large place.

“Our original meeting took place on April 27th where we decided to have our first event of a music quiz night with supper cooked by me.

“Sadly, only a week later, one of the boaters – our dear friend Mick Berry – lost his life due to a heart attack, which makes our fund-raising all the more important.

“Everyone was very saddened and shocked to hear of Mick’s death.

“Mick and Pat were very popular people around the marina where they were affectionately known as ‘ma and pa’.

“We just hope we can do something worthwhile in his memory.”

Another good friend of the couple, Karen English, paid tribute to Mick whose funeral wake was held at the marina where mourners were encouraged to wear colourful clothes.

She said: “Mick was the most amazing person you could ever wish to meet. He never had a bad word to say about anybody.

“It’s very sad what happened to Mick after we’d already started plans to buy a defibrillator.

“We had decided to do this because of the relative age of many of the people who use the facility.

“Now we hope to raise enough for a second defibrillator in Mick’s memory.”