On Tuesday afternoon, it has been announced that Freddy Shepherd died on Monday.
The former Newcastle United Chairman was aged 75 and the club has now released an official statement (see below).
Many former Newcastle players, including Alan Shearer, have also paid tribute to the one-time NUFC Chairman.
Official Newcastle United Statement:
The club were saddened to learn of the death of former chairman Freddy Shepherd on Monday, at the age of 75.
Born in Gisland, Northumberland, Freddy hailed from a local Tyneside family which supported Newcastle United for generations and became a director of the club in 1991 after his business success brought him into contact with Sir John Hall.
He took over from Sir John as chairman in 1997, having already played a key role in bringing the likes of Alan Shearer to St. James’ Park, and oversaw two FA Cup final appearances and thrilling Champions League campaigns.
Newcastle United managing director Lee Charnley, who worked with Freddy when he was chairman, said: “I was deeply saddened to learn of Freddy’s passing today.
“He was an incredibly passionate supporter of Newcastle United and maintained that love for the club even after he stood down as chairman.
“During his time at the club, as both a director and chairman, he had a big part to play in the club’s modern-day history and was a driving force in the redevelopment of our stadium and expanding its capacity to more than 52,000.
“He had a huge passion not just for the club, but for the city and region it represents.
“Our thoughts at this time are of course with his family and friends.”
The club flag at St. James’ Park is flying at half mast as a mark of respect.
A statement from the Shepherd family read: “Freddy Shepherd, former chairman of Newcastle United and chairman of Shepherd Offshore Group and Triple S Sports & Entertainment Group, sadly passed away peacefully at his home last night.
“At this difficult time the family have asked that their privacy be respected.
“So sad to hear my great friend and former Newcastle United chairman Freddy Shepherd has passed away. I owe him a huge debt for bringing me home. RIP.”
“RIP Freddy Shepherd, such an important part of Newcastle’s best years. Thanks for bringing us King Kev, Big Al and for showing ambition.”
“Very sad to hear the news about Freddie Shepherd. He took @NUFC to mixing it with the big boys. Thoughts with his family.”
Paul Robertson (former editor of the Chronicle):
“Sad news. Freddy was never shy to voice his opinions. He really cared about nufc and the North East.”
“Terrible news that Freddie Shepard has passed away, we had so many great memories at the toon, thoughts & prayers to all his family.”
“Very sad news to hear my former Newcastle United chairman Freddy Shepherd has passed away, my thoughts are with his family.”
“So sad to hear my former NUFC chairman Freddie shepherd has Died.”