A FORMER employee of Hartlepool businessman Gus Robinson paid tribute to his “extraordinary generosity” by remembering how he once helped two down-and-outs he found in a skip.
John Robinson, 54, told how Gus, who died suddenly on Tuesday, discovered two drug users inside the skip in his yard at businesses Gus Robinson Developments.
But instead of chasing them away, Gus ended up going to a local corner shop to buy them bags of food.
Mr Robinson, 54, who worked for Gus for around 20 years, said it was typical of his generosity.
The touching story happened in the mid 1980s after Gus forgot his key to get into his business premises on West View Road, and rang key holder Mr Robinson.
Mr Robinson, from the King Oswy area of Hartlepool, said: “We heard this noise from a big skip in the yard.
“We looked in and there were two glue sniffers. Instead of blasting them he went straight into his pocket and went to give them money.
“I said ‘don’t do that because they will probably just spend it on more glue’ so he went to the corner shop and bought them loads of food.”
He returned shortly afterwards with a bag of pies, sweets and chocolates for them.
Mr Robinson, no relation to Gus, added: “They were grateful to him.
“Anybody else would have gone mad because they were on his property, but he felt that sorry for them.
“It was typical of the man. That’s what he always did for the underdog.
“That story always sticks in my mind.”
Mr Robinson, who also attended numerous boxing functions with promoter Gus, told of his “terrible shock” on learning of his death earlier this week.
He said his and his wife Janet’s thoughts were with Gus’s wife Judith and all the family.
An inquest into his death was due to be opened by Hartlepool coroner Malcolm Donnelly today. Funeral details are still to be announced.
Tributes are continuing to be left to Gus on the Mail’s website at www.hartlepooltoday.co.uk
Recent messages include:
l For me, Gus was synonymous with Hartlepool. He was a good businessman, he had a heart of gold and was ready to help anyone. Anyone who knew him was better off for it. Rest in peace, Gus. Dee. Deidre
l A great gentleman and also great loss to the town he put his all into charity sports and employment never forgotten. Ray Tweddle streamline taxis
l My life is richer for having known Gus Robinson, a wonderfully kind, caring and honourable man, who was possibly the town’s biggest benefactor since Ward Jackson. My heartfelt sympathy to Judith and her family. God bless. Jackie Gough