Family’s tribute to ‘fantastic’ husband and father
PUBLISHED: 19:00 16 December 2019
A former journalist who worked for the Mercury for a number of years has died at the age of 90.
Ray Edbrooke's family have described him as 'a rock' and a fantastic father, husband a grandfather.
Ray joined the Mercury after completing national service in the Royal Air Force and took on a number of roles at the paper over the years including news reporter, sports editor and sub-editor.
He left to run his father's butcher shops in Bristol for a number of years, but journalism was his passion and he returned to work for the Mercury when his children had grown up.
Ray and his wife Mary, who died in December 2017, have four children, 10 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
His daughter Liz Blakeborough said: "He was the rock of our family and a fantastic father, husband and grandfather.
"He was always there for anyone that needed him and adored my mum, who he enjoyed over 60 years of happy marriage to.
"Unfortunately, my mother had Alzheimer's for over a decade, but he cared for her at home for as long as he could.
"Dad also had a very dry sense of humour, which he kept until the end and food was one of his greatest pleasures - he also had a big appetite for life."
Ray helped to train Jill Dando when she worked at the Mercury, along with a number of young reporters.
Liz said: "Dad ended up running his father's butcher shops in Bristol for a number of years as it was more lucrative.
"However, his love was journalism and he had a lot of enjoyment from his time at the Mercury.
"He still worked two days a week at the paper until he was 80."
Ray was also a member of the Lions club and Weston Operatic Society, where he directed a lot of his own plays to raise money for charity.
Liz said: "He acted and sang in the operatic for many years, taking lead roles in shows such as the Mikado and Guys and Dolls.
"He also directed many plays at the Theatre in the Hut - these shows were put on to raise money for cancer research.
"He also helped his wife Mary run her theatrical costume business for many years."