CELTIC AND Liverpool football club have led the tributes to singer-songwriter Gerry Marsden following his sad passing at the age of 78.
Marsden made his name as the frontman of 1960s pop outfit Gerry and The Pacemakers.
The band was the first to score three consecutive number one singles with their first three releases.
To Celtic and Liverpool fans, however, Marsden and the band will always be remembered for popularising the song You’ll Never Walk Alone.
Something of an anthem for both clubs, the song has been sung by fans for decades with the title even featuring as part of the Liverpool club crest.
Marsden was a regular visitor to both Anfield and Celtic Park, often taking to the pitch to lead supporters in a spirited rendition of the shared club anthem.
The 78-year-old's death was confirmed by broadcaster Pete Price this past Sunday.
“It’s with a very heavy heart after speaking to the family that I have to tell you the legendary Gerry Marsden MBE, after a short illness which was an infection in his heart, has sadly passed away.
“I’m sending all the love in the world to Pauline and his family. You’ll Never Walk Alone.”
Gerry’s voice accompanied our biggest nights. His anthem bonded players, staff and fans around the world, helping create something truly special ❤️
You’ll Never Walk Alone ❤️ pic.twitter.com/KE0tjClfqL
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) January 3, 2021
Marsden had battled with several illnesses in the years prior to his death.
In 2004 he underwent triple bypass heart surgery and in 2016 had a pacemaker fitted – the irony of which wasn’t lost on him.
As well as hits like I Like It and How Do You Do It? Marsden further endeared himself to the people of Liverpool with the anthemic song Ferry Cross The Mersey.
Liverpool Football Club were among those to pay tribute to the musician following news of his death.
“Gerry’s voice accompanied our biggest nights,” they said.
“His anthem bonded players, staff and fans around the world, helping create something truly special. You’ll Never Walk Alone.”
“‘Thank you for everything Gerry Marsden. We can’t wait until #LFC fans can sing at Anfield again for you.”
Everyone at #CelticFC sends their deepest condolences to the family & friends of Gerry Marsden.
Gerry’s famous lyrics will live on at Celtic Park forever. You’ll Never Walk Alone 💚🍀 https://t.co/JlNIVglFO1
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) January 3, 2021
Celtic echoed those sentiments, remembering Marsden as a popular presence at the club during his visits.
“Everyone at Celtic FC sends their deepest condolences to the family & friends of Gerry Marsden. Gerry’s famous lyrics will live on at Celtic Park forever. You’ll Never Walk Alone.”
Elsewhere, Frankie Goes To Hollywood singer Holly Johnson paid his respects “So sorry to hear about the passing of Gerry Marsden what a Liverpool Legend. So glad I met him.”
Piers Morgan also tweeted: “RIP Gerry Marsden, 78. The man who with Gerry and The Pacemakers gave the people of Liverpool two of the city’s greatest anthems. Ferry Cross The Mersey and You’ll Never Walk Alone. Great singer, great character. Very sad news.”
RIP Gerry Marsden, 78.
The man who with Gerry and The Pacemakers gave the people of Liverpool two of the city’s greatest anthems.. Ferry Cross The Mersey and You’ll Never Walk Alone.
Great singer, great character. Very sad news. pic.twitter.com/zWAd0ci1Sz
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) January 3, 2021
Though he was best known for his musical output, Marsden’s incredible philanthropic efforts were also worthy of attention with the singer donating more than £35 million to several charities.
In 1985, he teamed up with several other musicians to raise money following the Bradford City stadium fire, as well as the Hillsborough disaster of 1989.
He was later given the Freedom of the City of Liverpool and o awarded an MBE in 2003.
Marsden is survived by wife of 55 years Pauline and their daughters Yvette and Victoria.