TRIBUTES have been paid to a well-known town DJ who lost a brave battle with cancer earlier this week.
Willie Wright, from Milbank Road, spent many years working for Hartlepool Council’s gardening teams, but was known to many more people across the town having been the resident DJ at the King Oswy and Richardson Westgarth clubs.
Willie, 61, was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year and passed away in Hartlepool and District Hospice early on Monday.
News of Willie’s death sparked dozens of messages of condolence on social networking sites, while long-term friend Brendan Gough paid tribute to his pal’s fighting spirit.
Brendan, from the Weest Park area of Hartlepool, said: “Willie was a much-loved friend of our family, and he will be sadly missed.
“My late brother Liam introduced us to him about 40 years ago. Willie was a bit of a hippy back then and my mother took to him straight away.
“He quickly became a family friend, he was like a brother to all of us.
“He worked for the council up at Stranton nursery for about 15 years, he loved his gardening and was always pottering about in the greenhouse.
“The garden at his home could actually be a tribute to him, it was always beautiful with the plants and flowers.
“He wasn’t a big drinker, but he used to love a night out and so many people knew him.
“I’ve never heard anyone with a bad word to say about him. He was just a top man, that’s the best way I can describe him
“Even after he’d been diagnosed with cancer, he would do his best to get out with his friends on a Saturday night.”
Willie has two surviving sisters, Elizabeth and Pam.
His long-term partner Jean Amerigo died five years ago.
Brendan added: “He’ll be a big miss, not just to us as a family but to the friends he had right across Hartlepool.”
Brendan added: “He has fought a brave battle over the last few months, but he has never once complained or asked ‘why me?’.
“The cancer had spread throughout his body by the end, but he remained determined to beat it.”
Willie’s funeral will take place at St Oswald’s Church, in Brougham Terrace, next Thursday at 1.15pm.