Lawford/Colchester: Councillor pays tribute to son

A COUNCILLOR has paid tribute to his son who died aged just 27.

Joe Guglielmi lost his battle with neurofibromatosis type 2 - a very rare illness which causes tumours to grow on the brain.

His father, Carlo, who serves as Tendring Distrct Council’s planning portfolio holder, described him as a “fun loving boy” who was “full of life.”

Joe died peacefully in his sleep on July 5 and a celebration of his life was held at St Peter’s Church in Colchester on July 22. Around 200 mourners attended the service, many sporting football shirts in honour of Joe’s passion for Manchester United.

Mr Guglielmi said: “He was a fun-loving boy, full of life. He was an inspiration to anyone that was near him. With all the problems he faced, he still had a smile on his face and he never complained about anything.”

Joe was diagnosed with the condition when he was 18-years-old. He gradually lost his hearing and became partially sighted but it did not stop him from volunteering with the East of England Co-op and supporting other people who suffered from his condition.

He was studying to be a carer at Colchester Institute at the time after attending Manningtree High School.

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Joe also leaves behind a brother, Tom, 30 and a sister Anna, 23.

Mr Guglielmi, who also runs a post office in Lawford, said he has been overwhelmed by the amount of support and kind messages he has received.

He said: “I can’t believe the amount of support we have had from everyone - friends, family, customers and colleagues. We have been inundated with cards and offers of help. Everyone has been marvellous.”

He also thanked neurological experts at Addenbrooks Hospital in Cambridge who looked after Joe during his long illness and paid tribute to Joe’s mother, Lynda McFaull, who became Joe’s full-time carer at their home in Colchester.

A fund has been set-up in Joe’s memory with all donations going to the Neuro Foundation which supports sufferers of neurofibromatosis. Cheques made payable to the Foundation can be sent to Mr Guglielmi at 10a Waldegrave Way, Lawford, Essex CO11 2DX.

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