Gary Speed's dad 'lost for words' over tributes to soccer boss
THE father of the late Wales football manager Gary Speed says he is "lost for words" to describe the tributes from fans to his son since his death last year.
Speaking at the FAW football awards dinner Roger Speed said his family was still struggling to come to terms with his son's death.
But he said the support from the football world over the past year had been "overwhelming".
Speaking of the tributes, he said: "I couldn't believe it, honestly.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
"They were overwhelming. Every club he played for, even when we went away, every club were absolutely brilliant.
"Honestly I'm lost for words for the fans. Really, really, I'm lost for the words.
"To me, the fans, were absolutely brilliant. Carol and me ... Words can't describe it. We're that proud. It's tremendous."
Speed, the former Leeds, Everton and Newcastle star died in November 2011, aged 42.
His body was found hanged in the garage at his home near Chester, but a coroner at his inquest in January said he could not be satisfied the ex-Premier League star intended to kill himself.
Speed's death saw an outpouring of grief in the footballing community.
Fans at grounds around the country took part in tributes to the former Wales manager, who also played for Bolton and managed Sheffield United.
Many of the events were attended by members of Speed's family, including his wife Louise, sons Edward and Tommy, as well as his parents Roger and Carol.
Roger Speed described the way the sport rallied round his family as "fantastic".
Asked how the family were coping almost a year on, Mr Speed said: "We still can't come to terms with it, you know. We don't know why, and what have you, but things like this are helping us along.
Ahead of the World Cup qualifier against Scotland on Friday, Roger Speed called for Welsh fans to throw their support behind Chris Coleman, his son's successor as national manager.
"They were mates," said Mr Speed.
"I've known Chris since Gary and Chris were playing together. All I can do is wish him all the best.
"I wouldn't like the job he's got to do, to take over after Gary because I think Gary was doing an absolutely tremendous job.
"I really, really feel for Chris because some supporters, the Welsh, they can be a little bit fickle.
"Get behind him. Get behind Chris Coleman for me and Gary, please."