The grieving wife of a long-serving Hibs academy coach has told how she “lost her soulmate” after his tragic death at the weekend.
Gordon Mealyou died suddenly of a suspected heart attack at his Musselburgh home moments before setting off for Hibs’ title-clinching clash at Easter Road on Saturday.
The part-time youth academy coach and lifelong fan was the “happiest he’d ever been” after returning from a two-day break in York on Thursday, his wife told the Evening News yesterday.
READ MORE: Tributes as Hibs coach dies suddenly
“It was a lovely time,” said Doreen, 57. “He told me he was so glad I married him and that I was his soulmate – and he was mine.”
The couple were due to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary in August – and his children Leona, 24, and Robbie, 21, have been left devastated.
“I think Gordon’s football accolades have been really phenomenal – his philosophy in life was always to help others,” said Doreen.
“He was one of the least selfish men that anyone who knew him could ever hope to know and he was devoted to Leona and Robbie.
“He was a loyal husband and his philosophy in life was you reap what you sow. He always did his best for other people.
“For us going forward as a family, we’d like people to remember that man – he was a good man, an unselfish man and a loving man.
“He was always able to make people happy right up until the end.”
Gordon, who was 54 when he died, worked for the Bank of Scotland in Edinburgh for 30 years, becoming a director before leaving to join the Scottish Qualifications Authority in Dalkeith.
“He was due to start a new job there on Monday,” said Doreen. “So that he could spend more time with his family. I want to get across that he was more than just a football coach – he was a good, kind man.”
Fighting back tears, his son Robbie added: “He was a great man, a great father and a great husband.”
Former Pinkie St Peter’s Primary and Musselburgh Grammar student Gordon played for Musselburgh Windsor in the 1980s.
Lifelong friend Dougie Hall told how Gordon was best man at the wedding of his older brother, Stuart, who was struck down by a mystery illness last week.
“Gordon texted my wee brother Euan on Saturday morning to ask how Stuart was.”
Having joined Hibs’ academy in 2006, Gordon worked with all age groups and the under-15s and under-17s this season.
Current first team stars Jason Cummings and Jordon Forster are among recent graduates.
Hibs’ chairman Rod Petrie said: “Our thoughts are with Gordon’s wife, family and friends. Everyone at the club has been shocked and saddened.”