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THE Melksham community has rallied together to raise over £1,300 to pay for the funeral of popular local man, Maurice Eyles, who tragically died earlier this month.
Over 80 donations have been made to the online fundraiser, smashing the target of £1,000, with many locals paying tribute to Maurice as a selfless and wonderful man, who made time to talk to people in the town, bringing a smile to people’s faces.
The fundraiser was launched by local barbershop owner, Graham Griffiths, who said, “It’s quite clear that Maurice was one of, if not the most popular guy in town, if not the county!
“Constantly popping in to see how others were and making people laugh and smile. I would love to help him have the best send off that he is more than deserving of.”
Maurice died on Sunday 1st July after being found in the River Avon in Bath by the emergency services. Avon & Somerset Police are investigating the circumstances of Maurice’s death and an inquest by the Avon coroner will be carried out before his funeral can take place.
Also planned for the day of his funeral is a candlelit vigil that will take place in King George V playing field.
Speaking to Melksham News about Maurice, his friend of over 20 years, Darren Holder said, “Maurice knew how to make people laugh, especially if you were down, he knew how to cheer you up. I’ve known him for over 20 years and he was such a kind person and always good to talk to.
“He was an inventor and was always scribbling down anything that came into his head. He was ambitious, a bit of a ‘Del Boy’, always saying, “This time next year I’m going to be a millionaire!”
“I will miss seeing him around and our chats in Costa. I still feel like I will see him when I go there, it will take time for it to sink in.
“It will be good to give him a good send off – he deserves it.”
To support the community fundraiser in memory of Maurice, visit: https:// bit.ly/2Jr3tm1