A superhero's send off for "bravest" Wigan transplant dad

Flowers for Dave Hughes
Flowers for Dave Hughes

Hundreds of people turned out to pay their respects to an "amazing" Wigan dad today at a moving service.

Family and friends of Dave Hughes, 32, gathered to remember the life of the heroic heart transplant patient at a ceremony at St Anne's Church in Beech Hill.

Family and friends turned out to say goodbye to Dave

Family and friends turned out to say goodbye to Dave

Louise Hughes, Dave's wife, brought the couple's 20-month-old son George, who wore an iron-man t-shirt underneath his suit in memory of his comic-fan dad.

Dave, who died from complications of a heart transplant in Newcastle's Freeman Hospital on May 8 just 10 weeks after the 12-hour surgery, was celebrated with flowers reading "daddy" and "boogaloo", an affectionate nickname from family and friends.

The funeral service, co-ordinated by Varty's Funeral Directors - which is co-owned by Dave's best friend Kristen Varty, included several nods to Dave's bright and bold personality.

Mourners followed his coffin, which was draped with his favourite comic-universe blanket and was carried by pall-bearers who each brandished a t-shirt under their suits with Dave's favourite superheroes on including The Hulk and Superman.

Dave Hughes

Dave Hughes

The following service included touching readings from Dave's uncle Robert Hughes and best-friend Kristen, with Louise paying a beautiful tribute to her husband by reading out their wedding vows, previously unheard by hundreds of the attendees.

Louise said: "You are the best dad that I could ask for for George and always put us first,

"I promise to always care and cherish you for the rest of our lives.

"I love you to the moon and stars and back."

Some of Dave's favourite songs, including "A little respect" by Erasure and "Burning love" by Elvis Presley, accompanied the key points in the service and an emotional tribute was paid to the newly-married couple when their wedding song "Can't help falling in love" by Elvis, was also played over the speakers.

Robert reminded people of Dave's legacy, after his brave battle inspired thousands of people to sign the organ donor register.

To sign the register click here

Special tribute in the Wigan Post and Wigan Observer tomorrow (Tuesday) ...