Thanet Roadrunners have paid tribute to former member Richard Stirk following his death at just 45 years old.
The dad, originally from Margate, was a runner and also a junior coach with the club, training youngsters aged 8 to 18 between 2013 and 2017.
Fellow club member and coach Gary Gillatt said: “Richard was a very enthusiastic and chirpy coach and just a nice guy.
“He came along to the club in 2013 and he helped with marshalling, he competed, was manager for a season and then took up the coaching role with the junior group.
“During that time he was doing three sessions a week. It was a very busy time, he had a young family with his twins and his partner Claire’s daughter, was commuting to London for work and was coaching. We probably had around 100 juniors then.”
A tribute from the club said Richard’s passing “is a huge shock to everyone.”
The club added: “Richard was fantastic motivator of others. He took his coaching seriously but didn’t take himself too seriously! He loved his family, his music and his running.
“Thanet Roadrunners would like to express our profound shock at his sudden passing and send our thoughts to his family and friends.”
The funeral service for Richard will take place at 1130am on Friday 17th March, at Margate Crematorium.
As Richard loved colour, people are asked to honour this by wearing something colourful.
Family flowers only but any donations can be made direct to Twyman & Holmes or at the crematorium on the day.
RIP pal, went to school with you and was one of the very few people that was actually nice to me.