A Melton pensioner has died just days after inspiring a quick-fire fundraising campaign for the hospice which cared for him.
Retired painter and decorater Brian Kettell, who was 70, lived his final weeks in the LOROS hospice in Leicester.
His family were so grateful for the care he received they set up an online fundraising page which attracted pledges of more than £2,000 within days.
The Melton Times reported on the charity effort in last week’s issue and, poignantly, within hours of the paper going on sale Brian passed away at the hospice.
His son Cliff, who lives at Queensway, said: “The response from people after they heard dad had passed away has been unbelievable.
“We’ve had so many cards and people have been putting in cheques for LOROS. There have been loads of Facebook messages to.
“It just shows how popular dad was.”
Born in Melton, Brian lived all of his life in the town and had two brothers and three sisters.
He was in the Territorial Army for a number of years and cooked for the Duke of Edinburgh on one occasion.
Brian was a regular at The Welby pub and regularly played darts for them and for the town’s White Hart pub.
He was diagnosed with cancer in August last year and moved in with Cliff and his partner, Dawn Darlington, when his illness got worse.
Brian became a patient at the LOROS hospice and was popular with all the staff there.
Cliff said: “Everyone at the hospice has been awesome which is why we wanted to raise money for them.
“There was one lady who would do a 12-hour shift and then she would go and sit with dad for half-an-hour.
“The nurses used to fight over who was going to look after him because he was so well liked.
“When you look at his friends on Facebook he had youngsters aged 18 up to people his own age - he got on with everyone.”
Brian’s big passion was Leicester City FC and he celebrated a lifetime’s ambition when they won the Premier League title last May.
He was visited by some of the players in the hospice in December and got to hold the trophy.
The family has approached the club for a minute’s applause to be held on the 70th minute (his age) during Sunday’s home game with Manchester United at the King Power Stadium.
Cliff’s partner, Dawn, added: “If they agree to it will be a really nice tribute to Brian because he was such a massive fan of the club.”
A funeral is planned for Brian at 2.30pm at the Methodist Church in Melton on February 15.
There will be a service at Grantham crematorium before family and friends will gather for a wake at The Welby pub.