A KEY supporter of Haverhill Rugby Club has died suddenly at the age of 64.

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Ian Wade, from Kedington, near Haverhill, was pronounced dead on February 5 after he suffered a heart attack.

His wife Alice, 64, said she reported him missing to police on February 4 after he failed to return home from his part-time job in the library at Highpoint prison. Police eventually found him in his car in the car park.

Mr Wade, a father-of-two and grandfather-of-four, had been secretary of Haverhill Rugby Club and a match day reporter in his time, and had recently been asked to be president of Suffolk Rugby Union. He had also been heavily involved with St Felix Roman Catholic Church in Haverhill.

Chris Spencer, chairman of Haverhill Rugby Club, said his death was a “huge loss” to the club. “The club cannot recognise his contribution enough and it would be incredibly difficult to replace him. Personally I cannot say enough nice things about Ian. You would run out of paper. He was just a lovely, lovely man and a superb volunteer.”

He added his death had come as a “complete shock” to everybody.

John Paterson, who is a former president of Haverhill Rugby Club and a close friend of Mr Wade’s, said: “He was a very loyal friend. A very forthright sort of person with plain views and had his own view of things and put it across very well, and a very honest man.

“He enjoyed life and enjoyed what he did and was very supportive of the church and his family. He was very proud of his family and his house.”

Mr Wade’s wife said: “He was quite passionate about rugby and loved to follow it. His son and daughter have taken up his interest and have played in their time and even his granddaughter who is only seven has played rugby at school.”

She said her husband had a “dry sense of humour” and was “very precise and organised”. “He took his responsibility very seriously. Once he was a member of something he would go to all the meetings.”

His funeral is taking place on February 22 at 1pm at St Felix Church in Haverhill followed by Cambridge Crematorium at 3pm. Haverhill Rugby Club will be open from 2pm for a send off. If well-wishers want they can donate money to the St Felix Church building fund. People can give flowers if they wish at the funeral.

Mr Wade leaves his daughter Krystyna Berry and son Matthew.

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