As mentioned in my lastest profiles article, this section is not necessarily limited to fitness. With that said, this evening’s inspiration is brought to you by none other than my Uncle Del Deanus. I type this article with great sadness and tears as my family his friends, and those that had the pleasure of knowing him remember my Uncle exactly a year on since he lost his five year battle with Motor Neurons Disease aged just 38.
I wasn’t going to write anything today and simply just remember but after posting the remembrance photo above on Facebook and Instagram, Adam Wallace *a Facebook friend of mine who happened to have played under my Uncle’s management over a five year period* commented on the photo with one word ‘Legend’.
It was only then that I understood just how many people my Uncle had inspired and touched during his lifetime so felt the need to remember him by dedicating this article to him, my family and his many friends.
For those not familiar, Del Deanus or Delboy commonly known to his friends, was known by many in the footballing world having played for Tottenham Hotspur in Under 17’s and reserve teams as a centre half. My Uncle was in the same intake as future first team players Jeff Minton, Lee Hodges, Nick Barmby, Kevin Watson, Darren Caskey and Paul Mahorn.
After being released by Tottenham in 1992 he went onto play for numerous clubs before retiring from the game in 2000 due to back injury. It was then that he embarked on a managerial career and served as assistant manager / joint manager with Steve Newing at Southall, Northwood, Edgeware Town, Leyton, Welwyn Garden City and Enfield Town.
Del was diagnosed with Motor Neurons Disease aged 34 and despite his illness and physical deterioration, he still lived life to the full with his then girlfriend Emma, determined not to let his condition get in his way.
It was extremely tough to see my uncle in this way, but have learnt a great deal from him. His courage and bravery through the last five years was incredible. All he wanted to do is spend time with those close to him and enjoy whatever time he had left and that he sure did!
He wrote an autobiography entitled ‘Memories Never Die’ , which talks in depth about his football and managerial career, his family life, and how he felt upon the news of his diagnosis as well as coping with the disease. All proceeds of the sales goes directly to The Motor Neurons Disease Association to help others and their families who are also diagnosed with this illness.
He also got married to his long term girlfriend Emma, and had two beautiful children Megan and Ted before finally loosing his battle on 14th November 2012, 11 days after Ted was born.
We miss him immensely and thoughts are with my family, especially with Auntie Emma, cousin’s Megan & Ted, my Nan and all those that had the pleasure of knowing him at this sad time.
Should you wish to purchase the my Uncle’s autobiography, with all proceeds going to the Motor Neurons Disease Association, you can do so by clicking the link here.
I shall leave you with a short video clip when Del caught up with Ryan Giggs and Nicky Barmby at the Manchester United Grounds to relive those all important memories.
Gone but NEVER forgotten xxx