Tributes have poured in for Narajen Singh

PUBLISHED: 13:38 08 December 2011 | UPDATED: 13:46 09 December 2011

Naragen Singh, from Ely,  & flowers

Naragen Singh, from Ely, & flowers

Archant

"His death has been a total shock for the community. He always seemed so fit and well, he was always active, and always walking.

"He always had the time of day for everyone, his main topics of conversation were Ely City FC and the weather. He always had a smile on his face, he was always friendly, and was never in a mood.

TRIBUTES have poured in from the community following the sudden death of Ely shopkeeper and faithful Ely FC football fan Narajen Singh.

Narajen - who ran the Spar shop in New Barns Road for many years - died after the car he was driving hit a house on the corner of Lynn Road and Egremont Street early on Tuesday morning. It is thought likely that Narajen may have been taken ill, possibly suffered a heart attack, at the wheel of his car. Family friend Nicola Grogen has organised a community vigil outside Narajen’s shop at midday on Saturday, for flowers and cards to be laid by members of the public.

And at Ely City Football Club on Saturday, a minute’s silence will be observed at 3pm just before the team’s home game against Woodbridge.

Nicola said: “He was an enormous fan of Ely City FC, he was such a legend at the football club. He always went to see the home games, whaterever the weather.

“His death has been a total shock for the community. He always seemed so fit and well, he was always active, and always walking.

“He always had the time of day for everyone, his main topics of conversation were Ely City FC and the weather. He always had a smile on his face, he was always friendly, and was never in a mood.”

A mum of six, Nicola says Narajen took a great interest in her family, but sadly he didn’t see her sixth child, born on Novembember 30.

She added: “Narajen’s shop was on the way to school, and lots of people knew him, calling in there for a newspaper or sweets. He has been at the heart of the community for many years.

A Facebook page has been set up, where tributes can be left for Narajen.

Manager of Ely City FC, Alan Alsop, said Narajen was the club’s most faithful supporter, attending home games for around 40 years.

“He has been at the football club ever since I was a child,” remembered Alan. “He didn’t miss many home games on a Saturday.

“He was always there, standing in the same place, walking up and down and giving the linesman some stick. He stood there in his red turban, everyone knew him, including many away supporters.

“He was a lovely bloke; and if we won the game, he would often buy a drink for me and the players. He was a really kind hearted man.”

Narajen’s wife Rupinder has described the shock of losing her beloved husband on the day he told her “I don’t want to die young.”

Mrs Singh said:”I think he suffered heart failure. The day before, he said he had a pain in his arm, but thought he had pulled a muscle and took two paracetamol tablets.

“I told him to make a doctor’s appointment; the pain did not stop so he made an appointment for 10,00am. He was talking to me before he went. I told him to tell the doctor everything, and he said “I don’t want to die young.”

Mrs Singh believes that her husband’s heart stopped at the time his car hit the house by the traffic lights in Lynn Road.

“The ambulance staff tried to resuscitate him and the helicopter took him to hospital,” she said.

“Some one came to the shop to say there had been an accident, and I got a lift to the scene, I started running towards it. The police told me to calm down. Officers took me to the hospital, and the helicopter took my husband.”

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