I have no kids, I’m not from a big or close knit family, I’ve always been regarded as a cold, heartless so and so…but that went out the window tonight when I saw the news theat young Sunderland fan Bradley Lowery had passed away, after his brave battle against neuroblastoma.

This kid has lived the (football) dream for the last year or so and credit must go to SAFC, the FA and clubs up and down the country, for their participation in the young lad’s send off, with greatest respect to Jermaine Defoe for taking this lad to heart.

Much like the way a club pays tribute to a much loved player or manager, Bradley has been afforded the RIGHT tribute by HIS club.

I don’t dislike Sunderland and it’s fans, I hate them, but purely at a footballing level. Simply because they are local rivals and ‘top dogs’ status is afforded when no other ‘trophy’ is likely.

This shouldn’t be championed as a prize, it isn’t, but until either club is in a position to win anything it’s the best we can do or hope for.

Bradley crammed a lot in, in a short space of time, and faced down his condition with fantastic spirit and resolution that would’ve broken others. Innocence of youth you may say. He battled on partially blind to his condition and for this I can’t hide my admiration for.

What does this have to do with Newcastle United you may say? The simple answer is it doesn’t. It has only the vague connection that this could happen to anyone, no matter which town you are born in or which football team you support.

Much like the two Newcastle lads that were the unfortunate victims of a plane crash, innocently travelling to watch a football friendly, Bradley Lowery wasn’t given the chance to carry on in life through no fault of his own.

What he did in such a short space of time was remarkable. If any potential child of mine had done the same, I’d be beaming with pride and admiration and his family must be eternally proud.

Football rivalry goes out of the window, even rival supporters can be part of your crowd or family. They both bleed and feel the same pain as each other.

Bradley Lowery led an extraordinary life in such a short space of time.

The message is, love life, it can be cut short for anyone. No matter which stripes you support.

(All contributions from Newcastle fans welcome, send articles (as well as ideas/suggestions) to [email protected])

  • Hughie_Gallacher

    I couldn’t have expressed it better.

  • TubbyMunky

    Rest in peace, Bradley. You did the North East proud.

  • Mark Davies

    RIP kidda. And may your family treasure the moments you made together.

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    A good article about a quite unique child who battled a terrible disease with a smile on his face
    Jermaine Defoe has shown great commitment to this lad & deserves respect for doing so
    A beautiful little boy sadly taken at such a young age

  • Leicester Mag

    Saw news waiting for a train in Central station. So so sad and unfair. One small comfort is the happiness football brought to Bradley. RIP little fella.

  • Grahame Johnson

    The fact 52000 at a toon game took part in a minutes applause in encouragement to this young mans brave fight will be a lasting memory of respect

  • Steven05

    Excellent article. This has nothing to do with football – it’s so much bigger and more important. God bless Bradley, R.I.P.

  • Wor Lass

    Nice one, Paul.

  • Kev-82

    Nice article, RIP Bradley. Next time we have a bad day and feel rubbish, just think of the bad days this poor lad has suffered yet still always went around with a great smile on his face. It’s tragic that kids so young have to go through this.

  • hetonmag

    Brilliantly said Paul, RIP Bradley xx.

  • Phildene

    What a very brave little boy Bradley was-and how brave are his family too. I shed a tear every time I saw his little smiling face knowing he was battling such a horrible disease. And what a loving commitment Jermaine Defoe showed to Bradley too. RIP Bradley.

  • Dazes

    Well said mate very nice

  • Alreet

    You played a hard game. Well done bonny lad. Rest now.

  • Alex

    Bradley’s experiences, supported by so many in the world of football, have given his mum, dad and family so many great memories of, and momentos from, his short, but wonderful, life. I hope these help them in the coming weeks, months and years, so that they know “everybody loved their Bradley”.

  • nufcslf

    Great article. RIP Bradley.

  • X,WHY,Y MAN.

    R.I.P Bradley.

    The young man led a short life in which he had to struggle the whole time with his illness which he did with a smile on his face the whole time.
    I know this will be scant consolation to his poor parents at this time but he led his short life to the full and had experiences that most folk can only dream of.
    Time is a great healer as they say and hopefully in the future they can look back and see what an impact he made on the world with pride.
    The young lad was suffering though and of late you could see that was ever more apparent so in that respect his pain is now over.

    He has left a legacy for his family which most people who live a full life time never get to do.
    Sleep well little one.

  • Benjamin Appleby

    Tragic… fair play to the makems and to Mr Defoe who were magnificent in their support for the family. let’s hope for a cup tie against the lot from down the road to celebrate his life!!!

  • East Durham Mag

    RIP Bradley you melted our hearts. Jermaine Defoe you have real class.

  • James ByanyMeans Lawrence

    Absolute solider that boy!!! To any human being anywhere club, race, creed or background – the true feeling of the heart dropping hearing the sad news of this lad’s passing. Massive respect to both Defoe and SAFC for their aid in making this little boys dreams come true

  • Peter

    RIP Bradley…and thanks for reminding us of our common humanity.. and respect to Jermain Defoe as well…