Memorial bench unveiled at Victory Park in memory of Chorley FC Fan David Edwards
The young daughter of murdered Chorley solicitor David Edwards unveiled a memorial bench to her father on the third anniversary of his death.
Ten-year-old Mahalia Edwards cut the ribbon at Chorley FC in front of family, friends and Magpies players and manager Jamie Vermiglio.
His parents, brother and ex-partner Debs Livesely, from Chorley, funded the memorial bench at the ground.
Debs said she had wanted to do something in his memory, and particularly on the third anniversary of David’s death.
Debs, David’s partner for eight years, said: “I wanted to do something to mark his memory. I think it’s great - the club have been very supportive all along.
“It is exactly three years to the day since he was killed and that’s why I wanted to do it now.
“David was funny and a great dad.”
David’s parents Tony and Ann and brother Peter all contributed towards the bench.
The Chorley-based solicitor was a keen Chorley FC.
His friend Matthew Bogart attended home and away matches with David for many years.
They nicknamed themselves the Sunshine Gang on their trips to away matches.
Matthew recalled how at one game David was so tired after being the on-call duty solicitor the previous night that he fell asleep during the game.
He said: “Even though Dave was from Halesowen, he had lived and worked in Chorley for a long time.
“Chorley became his second home he was well respected by everyone.
“He was a dear friend to myself and all the Sunshine Gang. Thank you to Dave’s family and daughter for donating the bench, also Chorley FC for letting it be placed at the ground.”
Friend Paul McIvor said: “The man was a legend. He had a lot of friends. He is missed and always will be.”
Mark Brooks, chairman of the ManKind charity which supports male victims of domestic abuse, said: “It is so fitting that Dave’s daughter wishes to mark the memory of her great father in this way.
“It not only celebrates his life, it will also encourage men who are in this situation to come forward.”
Chorley FC commercial manager Josh Vosper said: “For those who didn’t know Dave, he was a kind, gentle and often humorous individual who had time for everyone.
“We were all devastated to learn of his passing three years ago and his memory will live with everyone at Chorley FC forever.
“Dave will best be remembered as a friendly face and stalwart. He went to every game, home and away, being part of the team and we were shocked when the news broke about what had happened behind closed doors.
“The bench is a tribute to the man and he’ll never be forgotten.”
David Edwards was murdered by his “violent, abusive and bullying” wife Sharon in 2015.
At her trial, it emerged that she had previous convictions for domestic violence, and David had suffered a catalogue of injuries at her hands.
She killed him at their home in Parkers Wood Close, Chorley, just days after they had returned from their honeymoon in Las Vegas.
Mr Justice William Davis told Sharon Edwards at the murder trial: “The man you killed was a hugely valued member of the community in Chorley and in Lancashire.”
He sentenced her to life imprisonment with a minimum of 20 years before parole would be considered.
A report published last month concluded that there were ‘missed opportunities’ to
identify David as a victim of domestic violence.
He had several times visited his GP and A&E with injuries but no further questions were asked about his injuries.