TRIBUTES have been paid to Ron Andrew, one of Mossley’s oldest players, who has died aged 88.
The left back made 55 appearances for the Lilywhites between 1953-58, broken only by a 19-match spell at Ashton United in 1955-56.
Ron, who also won representative honours for the Manchester County FA, was last at Seel Park earlier this season for an old players’ reunion when he was guest of honour.
Football was not the only sport in which Ron excelled as he was a former England international at judo, which he also taught at Copley Recreation Centre.
Ron lived on Huddersfield Road, Millbrook, next to the engineering company he once owned, and which is now the Revive Church.
Mossley director Steve Porter, a distant relative of Ron, described as an “absolute gentleman”.
“Ron was the smartest man in Mossley on Whit Friday and Remembrance Sunday with his waist-coasted suit and pocket watch and in his overcoat,” he said.
That was echoed by Roy Gibson, who was an employee at R Andrew Engineering Ltd.
Roy, 49, who had power of attorney and is one of the executors of his will, said: “Ron had the ability to bring the best out in everything and everyone.
“He was a true gent and mentor for me from my early teens to today. It has been my absolute honour to be regarded so highly from someone so special.
“I started working for Ron aged 15 and he was like a father to me.
“If you imagined the smartest man it would be Ron. You never saw him in a sweater or jumper.”
Ron was born in Bishop Auckland but at an early age moved to Mossley, where he attended Livingstone school.
He began working at wire rope manufacturers Glover Brothers in Stalybridge before leaving to start his own precision engineering tool making business.
After initially renting premises, he built his own factory which at its height had seven employees.
Ron, whose other interests included ballroom dancing and playing the drums in bands, keeping fit and going on cruises, had battled prostate cancer and had other health issues.
He died in Tameside Hospital on Thursday, April 16 and his funeral is at Mossley Cemetery on Friday, May 1 at 2.15pm. Friends are invited, though they may have to remain away from the grave because of social distancing.
Ron leaves daughters Lesley and Helen, son Michael and grandchildren.