Wear a white rose for Gary

THE centre of Roberttown will be awash with white roses on Wednesday as hundreds of friends and family say farewell to a wonderfully popular man, who died suddenly at the weekend.
Father of three Gary Hallas, 42, who lived in Quarryfields, Mirfield and played cricket for Crossbank Methodists in Birstall, was a happygolucky, larger than life character who made friends wherever he went.
Gary was diagnosed with a serious heart condition earlier this year and had been increasingly ill in recent weeks. He was taken into Dewsbury District Hospital on Friday but died peacefully on Saturday. His family were with him.
He leaves his parents Rodger and Jean, younger brother Graeme and sister Keiren, plus three children Elliott, 15, Joseph 14, and Ashleigh 11. He was divorced from wife Debbie.
And it was Gary’s children who decided the white rose should be the theme of their dad’s funeral.
“He was a proud Yorkshireman,” explained his dad and ‘boss’ Rodger this week. Gary worked with his brother and parents in the family steel stockholding business, which began as Primetals in Gomersal, and is now GHE Stansfeld UK, based in Leeds.
“The white rose was Gary’s thing, and his children have asked if people coming to his funeral could wear a single white rose in his memory,” Rodger added.
Gary went to Hightown CofE and Heckmondwike Grammar School. The former Spenborough Athletic Club member who “had a go at pole vault” just to help out, ended up Yorkshire Junior champion, AAAs Northern Counties silver medallist and in the national pole vault squad. He was also a diehard rugby fan and played many years at Dudley Hill in Bradford.
Gary played rugby alongside both his dad and brother Graeme, 40, who went on to play for Hull KR, Huddersfield, Hull and Halifax, and was coach of the Hunslet Hawks.
As a cricketer he played for Cleckheaton St John’s before Crossbank, and will be remembered said Rodger as a “wicketkeeper/batsman – well, a bit of a slogger!” Indeed, once chasing a total of only 120odd, Gary went in at number three and hit 117! It typified his carefree attitude to life.
A Facebook page set up in tribute to Gary has attracted hundreds of comments, from across the world.
His funeral cortege will walk from the family home in Roberttown to the village’s All Saints Church for an 11am service, with committal at 12 noon at Dewsbury Moor Crematorium, and afterwards at the Star pub.
Family notice p2

Share this post