Foot­ball fans ap­plaud Lee Rigby’s fam­ily

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - DANIELLE ROPER

THE fam­ily of mur­dered sol­dier Lee Rigby were among around 1500 peo­ple who turned out for a spe­cial armed forces day at Mac­cles­field Town Foot­ball Club on Satur­day.

Lee’s widow, Re­becca Rigby, their son Jack Rigby, five, and Lee’s dad Phil McClure, as well as other fam­ily mem­bers, joined around 100 armed forces mem­bers and veter­ans who watched the Silk­men’s Va­narama Na­tional Premier League game against Alder­shot for free.

Lee and Re­becca’s son Jack was also the club mas­cot for the game.

Dan Ack­er­ley, Mac­cles­field Town Foot­ball Club’s com­mer­cial man­ager, said: “It was a fab­u­lous day and we raised more than £500 for the char­ity Scotty’s Lit­tle Sol­diers’, sup­port­ing chil­dren of the be­reaved.

“Lit­tle Jack was shak­ing the do­na­tion buck­ets him­self. It was all very emo­tional, es­pe­cially when Lee’s fam­ily walked to their seats and ev­ery­one ap­plauded them.”

Those who turned out to show their sup­port in­cluded for­mer Manch­ester City play­ers Joe Cor­ri­gan and Paul Dickov and St He­len’s Rugby League Cap­tain and for­mer Eng­land for­ward Jon Wilkin.

Dan said: “Jack has never played foot­ball be­fore but af­ter com­ing to our club, a lit­tle lad who’s lost his dad will now join a foot­ball club.

“The ball spon­sor, Arighi Bianchi, even asked him to sign the ball with all the play­ers.”

The Silk­men lost to Alder­shot 2-0 but Dan said: “We achieved our ob­jec­tives - rais­ing funds and Jack hav­ing fun.”

“And I can con­firm Jack is now a Macc Town fan!”, he added.

Fusilier Rigby, 25, was off duty when he was at­tacked and killed on May 22, 2013, in Wool­wich, Lon­don.

Speak­ing af­ter the game, his widow Re­becca said: “Jack had a great day and thor­oughly en­joyed be­ing the mas­cot for Mac­cles­field Town and can’t wait to go back.

“Lee would have loved it too, yes it was quite emo­tional, see­ing Jack so happy and Lee not be­ing there to see him, he would have been so proud of Jack.

“We raised aware­ness of Scot­tys Lit­tle Sol­diers and through the gen­eros­ity of the sup­port­ers we col­lected a stag­ger­ing £573.27 for this won­der­ful char­ity.

“We would like to thank ev­ery­one at Mac­cles­field Town FC for their warm wel­come, hos­pi­tal­ity and gen­eros­ity we all had a great day and look for­ward to see­ing them when they play Hal­i­fax in April.”

●● Above, Lee’s widow Re­becca Rigby with their son Jack, in­set, Re­becca’s mum Su­san Met­calfe, Jack and Re­becca watch the game at the Armed Forces Day

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