Tributes have been paid to a former councillor and Accrington Victoria Walk-in Centre campaign leader who died after failing to recover from surgery.
Chris Reid attended Royal Blackburn Hospital for a routine operation on May 21 but later developed pneumonia.
The grandfather-of-five was placed on a ventilator earlier this month and passed away on the critical care unit on Friday, June 14 – two days after his 63rd birthday.
Chris, from Great Harwood, served as Netherton ward councillor in the town for eight years in the 1990s and was a ‘passionate’ NHS activist.
He helped lead the recent Save Accrington Victoria Walk-in Centre campaign, was chair of the Great Harwood Patients Participation Group and was previously a Labour Group secretary and local party secretary.
Ruth Reid, who was married to Chris for nearly 38 years, said he was a ‘good father, granddad and husband’.
She said: “He had chest issues for a number of years and developed pneumonia. He didn’t have the strength to fight it.
“It was the underlying the chest conditions that prevented him from making the recovery that they hoped for. He had been in a lot of pain from gall stones so either way he couldn’t win.”
Chris was born in Dublin and previously lived in Accrington before moving to Great Harwood in 1986.
He worked as a driver on Hyndburn Transport and then as a truck driver.
Ruth said: “He was very interested in politics and very outspoken about it. He has been a strong Labour supporter for as long as I’ve every know him and the NHS was one of his passions – as well as Accrington Stanley!
“He had actually already bought his season ticket for the coming season.
“He was a great support to [former Hyndburn council leader] George Slynn when he was on the council as well.”
Chris’s daughter Diane Reid said: “We want to express our thanks to the critical care team at Royal Blackburn Hospital for the exceptional care my dad received as well as their support to his family throughout.
“He will be remembered by us for his unwavering support, quick wit, extensive knowledge of the UK road network and DIY lessons!
“He was a font of all knowledge and made everything seem surmountable.”
Great Harwood councillor Noordad Aziz said he has lost ‘a great friend, my biggest supporter and my partner in causing chaos’.
He said: “He lived with a smile and wanted to make a difference. He certainly did both.
“He wasn’t scared of being brutal in his words to me to make sure I never faltered but he always did in a loving manner and delivered with a smile.
“My last conversation with him was about the NHS and how it was vital we fight for it.”
Close friend and fellow Walk-in Centre campaigner Kimberley Whitehead said his death is a ‘massive shock’.
She said: “I don’t think I’ve cried so much for a long time. We will miss him.
“We did quite a lot of projects together and went to the football together. He was a massive Stanley fan and a lot of people will know him there.”
Councillor Munsif Dad said Chris was a ‘very good man’ and inspired others around him.
He said: “I admired him for the way he campaigned for the health sector and Accrington Victoria Hospital.
“He was a very proactive member and encouraged people like me to get involved.
“He was very passionate and I will always remember that about him.”
No date has been set for the funeral and his arrangements are being handled by Great Harwood Funeral Service on Clayton Street.
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Source – https://www.lancs.live/news/tributes-chris-reid-who-died-16456349
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