Friends and other soccer fans have paid tribute to a “unique” supporter who was a legend among those who knew him.
Danny Bailey, 39, of Hatfield, died on Friday July 30th after a two-week battle with Covid-19 after picking up the virus while watching England in the Euro 2020 final at Wembley, MyLondon reports.
Speaking to Mike Televantou, 32, a good friend of Danny’s, he said: “Danny was unique to me, I have a lot of friends in football but no one was like Danny, it’s pretty hard to fit in the words he was just a very unique personality. “
The couple first met him in 2011 due to their support for Arsenal.
“He was someone you would recognize from a mile away, and as soon as he sees you, even if it’s a mile away, he’ll scream your name at the top of his lungs no matter where you are, whether in a train station, pub or library. “
He continued, “He was just a great, great person. Nobody could really imitate what he was after or what passion he had for life.
“He was one of those people everyone knew, everyone met and each of whom had a story.
“I always knew he was popular, but I don’t think I fully realized the extent until after he died, when all the comments and posts came in.”
Perhaps the secret to Danny’s popularity, however, was his fun-loving nature, as Mike explained, “He wasn’t the most complicated guy, he just wanted to have fun.
“He enjoyed doing stupid things and was always up for a laugh and a joke, even just making stupid faces and dressing up.
“He did what he wanted to do and didn’t worry about what other people were thinking.”
In addition to football, Danny had a real passion for animals that he followed across Europe: “He loved animals and went to zoos on days away, it was something he really wanted to do and he enjoyed it.
“He was just a very sincere guy, what you see is what you get.”
Danny’s will to go his own way led to some eccentricities and some of Mike’s best memories of Danny came from his stubbornness to do what he wanted: “We went to all the cup finals together, got so much time on trains and spent traveling, there were some stupid things he would do. “
Danny’s passion for life came after he had kidney problems as a teenager and received a transplant that gave him a new life. As Mike explained, “I think from his point of view he always had borrowed time after the transplant, everything was a bonus so he lived life to the max.”
“You can kind of see it, he took a risk going to Wembley (for the European Championship finals), he was fully vaccinated, but after the transplant he had to take immunosuppressants and that makes you vulnerable.
“But you could never convince Danny not to do something he wanted to do, there was no regret for him.”
Mike started a fundraiser to help Danny’s family pay for their funeral expenses, which have exceeded their £ 10,000 goal in just one week. The excess money will be donated to the kidney department of the Lister Hospital, which saved Danny’s life several times and carried out his transplant at the request of his family.
Friends of Danny have also left touching tributes, a reading: “I hope you knew how many people loved you.”
As a warning to others, Mike added, “I would say for myself personally that there is still a risk with Covid, it has not gone away despite the opening. Be careful and take precautions because I don’t want anyone going through what we went through for the last week it was horrible.
“He was taken too early, a good friend and a great personality, you don’t want to lose people like that in your life.”
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