MONEY has been raised for campaign group Fathers4Justice in memory of a popular Kidderminster musician, who died last month, aged 44.
About £500 was raised during the collection held during Paul "Fearfulfingers" Havard's funeral on Wednesday, February 19, at St Ambrose RC Church, Kidderminster and at his wake, which was held at the Boars Head pub in Worcester Street the same day.
Mr Havard's mother, Pat O'Connor, 66, told The Shuttle the funeral was attended by about 200 people and the family had chosen to raise money for Fathers4Justice because it was a cause the father-of-two "believed in strongly". He had raised his son Liam, 15, as a single father since the age of two.
Mrs O'Connor said: "We had the collection boxes at the church and there was a big wake at the Boars Head pub, where a lot of local bands put together a tribute for Paul and we had a collection box there as well. Paul felt so strongly about the cause.
"When we got out of the church, I could not believe it - there was queues of people all round the street and there was more than 200 people there. It was unbelievable and the Boars Head, because it is a music venue, was packed. He was very popular. I think it gave me a bit of cheer although I am devastated about all this because of the suddenness of it all."
Mr Havard, of Borrington Road, lived in Kidderminster all his life and died on Friday, February 7, just five days after being diagnosed with cancer at Worcestershire Royal Hospital, in Worcester.
The former Birchen Coppice First School and Harry Cheshire High School pupil worked as a butcher at Morrisons, Green Street and leaves behind son Liam and daughter Emily, 10, sisters Katie O'Connor and Kerry Jones and father Patrick O'Connor.
He played in several local bands during his life, having taught himself to play piano, guitar, harmonica and banjo while growing up and was most recently a member of the Karpet Kickets. On facebook, band members announced the death "with great sadness".