FOOTBALLERS held a minute’s silence as they remembered three women who were shot dead by a relative.
The poignant moment came during the first-ever football match in memory of Alison Turnbull, 44, her daughter Tanya Turnbull, 24, and Alison’s sister Susan McGoldrick, 47.
Four teams vied for the inaugural Alison, Tanya and Susan Memorial Trophy, held at Wingate’s Welfare Park on Saturday.
The charity tournament was organised by Alison’s son, Bobby Turnbull, 24, who, despite never playing football in his life, turned out for one of the sides.
The games were followed by a buffet at The Railway Crossings pub, in the village and a memorial night at Horden Social Welfare Centre later that evening.
Hartlepool Golf Club groundsman Bobby, who joined the Blackhall Over-40s side for the match, said: “The lads suggested a minute’s silence before the game, to be honest I hadn’t even thought of doing that. I was really choked up.”
Bobby hopes to make the match an annual event.
A collection, raffles and an auction of Easington-born Sunderland winger Adam Johnson’s football boots, successfully bought for £200 by Bobby’s uncle Ken Foster, brought the total raised for the homicide division of Victim Support to £1,500.
The tournament saw the Wingate Railway Crossings team, also known as Wingate FC, play against the Wingate Fir Tree side, while Blackhall Over-40s played Wingate Over-40s.
Wingate Crossings and Wingate Fir Tree drew 1-1, but Crossings won on penalties, while Wingate Over-40s beat Blackhall Over-40s 1-0.
In a winner v winner final, Crossings won Wingate Over-40s 4-1 to take the Alison, Tanya and Susan Memorial Trophy.
The Fir Tree played the Blackhall Over-40s and the Fir Tree beat the veterans side 4-0.
Bobby, 24, from Blackhall, took two penalties during the game for the losing sides – and missed both.
“Everyone in the park stopped to watch me take them, it was really daunting,” he said.
Bobby thanked everyone who supported the event and added: “Quite a few people turned out to watch us, I was quite surprised.
“We had a presentation of the trophy in the Railway Crossings pub afterwards, and a buffet.”
Later in the evening, 200 people turned out for the memorial night, which featured music from local band Central Park, a comedian, raffle and meat draw with prizes donated by Chapman and Sons butchers in Blackhall, and Wynyard and Castle Eden golf clubs.
Bobby’s uncle, Bob Hardman, Susan and Alison’s brother, compered the auction and gave a speech about his sisters and niece, and also said how proud he was of Bobby’s anti-gun campaign.
The women were shot dead on New Year’s Day 2012 by Susan’s partner Michael Atherton, 42, at the home he and Susan shared in Greenside Avenue, Horden.