Lee Collins’ partner Rachel Gibbon posts an emotional farewell after police issue a statement over the footballer’s sad death.
The former Yeovil Town captain suddenly died on Thursday (the 1st of April), with a one minute silence held at football grounds across the country on Good Friday in memory of him.
As fans, staff and clubs continue to pay tribute, Rachel has written a thoughtful and heartfelt message on social media, describing him as her “best friend, other half and go-to”.
Both teams observe a minutes silence in memory of former Vale player, Lee Collins.
— Port Vale FC (@OfficialPVFC) April 2, 2021
Yeovil’s game against Altrincham was postponed in light of learning the news, and among the teams to show they respect prior to kick off include his former clubs Forest Green Rovers, Northampton Town and Port Vale.
His partner, Rachel Gibbon, has taken to social media to give a tribute to Collins, and expressed thanks for all the messages of condolence and support expressed.
She wrote: “Lee Collins,
“You’re their captain, their leader, their champ.
“You’re my best friend, my other half, my go to.
“I don’t know how to do this without you but I promise, I’ll give it a good go for our girls.
“Thank you all for kind messages, wishes and thoughts”
You’re their captain, their leader, their champ.
You’re my best friend, my other half, my go to.
I don’t know how to do this without you but I promise, I’ll give it a good go for our girls.
Thank you all for kind messages, wishes and thoughts ❤️
— Rachel Gibbon (@rags_87) April 2, 2021
Flowers, flags and scarves are among the tributes which can be seen piling up outside the club’s Huish Park stadium, with one message believed to be from manager Darren Sarll describing him as a “leader of men”.
A statement from Yeovil told fans they were welcome to show their respect, as they tweeted: “The club have left an area near the ticket office for supporters to lay flowers and leave tributes to Lee. We miss you, Captain.
“When visiting Huish Park to pay respects, please ensure you remember to follow the Government’s COVID guidelines. Stay safe.”
A spokesperson for Avon and Somerset police said: “Officers attended a report of a sudden death at an address in High Street, West Coker yesterday evening at about 5pm.
“Sadly, the body of a 32-year-old man was located.
“His death is not being treated as suspicious and has been referred to the coroner. His family have been informed and our thoughts are with them.”
A spokesperson for the league said: “The National League is deeply saddened by the tragic news of the passing of Yeovil Town club captain Lee Collins.
“Our prayers and thoughts are with his family at this time.
“As a mark of respect, a pre-match minute silence will take place at each National League match this weekend.”
“He was the captain of Yeovil, and the heartbeat of their team.”
“We’d like to send our condolences our to his family and friends.”
Matt Smith and Aaron McLean pay tribute to Lee Collins, who died yesterday at the age of 32. pic.twitter.com/dpIsSDivKH
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) April 2, 2021
Twitter users reacted to Lee Collins’ partner posts emotional farewell after the police statement…
@JeffBrazier: Sending love Rachel. You’ll find a way, we always do. 🙏🏻
@kristaylor26: It was a privilege to know Lee and spend a lot of time with him at during our time at Vale. My words or anybody else’s words won’t make a difference right now but just letting you know I am thinking of you and the girls at this awful time.
@patrickfoster02: Such incredible bravery – one of the most poignant tweets I have read. Thoughts and prayers with you and the family. I hope you can take some solace in the fact that you have the footballing world and the whole nation’s support and love.
@GaryEllerton: Thoughts with you and your family our love never fades for our loved ones take care of your girls and just as important yourself nobodys words will help you at this time it will be hard but keep going we are all heart broken for you 💔
@CleaveO: 💚💔 So sorry for your loss. Thoughts are with you and the family at this very difficult time. Lee was a great captain at Yeovil who always gave 100% putting everything on the line. Played for both the shirt and badge.
@BigStevo_1976: The deepest condolences I can offer to you and the girls at this time. Your Vale friends are with you in spirit. He will forever be in the legends that wore the shirt. Hope you get through the next few days and weeks knowing we are all thinking about you.
@Adam_Page442: Thoughts are with you all at this deeply sad time!! Can’t imagine the pain your going through atm. The whole of the Northampton Town community is with you
@ytfcelliot: Sorry for your loss. Lee always gave 110% for Yeo, we are eternally grateful.
@dallima: Very sorry for your loss. Wishing you and your girls strength now and into the future. Love and best wishes from a Hereford fan
@northantsnobody: Our loss is nothing compared to yours. Beautiful, strong words Rachel, at the most difficult of times. I’m sure you will do everything that you need to do, to make sure your family come through this. Footballers say about taking one match at a time. Take one day at a time
@sapper268: It’s so hard but you will find the strength to get through this. God bless you and your family.
@DanielNTFC17: So sorry for your loss, the world is cruel and unfair, rip legend
@shaner1989: Think you have the support of the whole footballing community. Do Lee proud, as I am sure you will.
@rhjsmith1984: Regardless of what team they play for, what colours they don, to lose someone at any time is sad, but at your age is so so sad, so from a Pompey fan to you and your family I am so sorry for your loss
@bass_loser: I love football and family and I was saddened by the news, irrespective of the shirt that we wear. I hope these messages offer you some strength and know although most are strangers, you share our love and support X
@goodysmash: God bless you and your girls.. God has Lee now.. I have no words that can help you at the moment other than you are in so many people’s thoughts and prayers .. I didn’t know collo personally but I so admired him as a footballer and a leader.. you can do this 🙏
@Ryan27061986: This breaks my heart. All the best Rachel to you and the kids. You’re in a lot of peoples thoughts atm.