Melrose pay tribute to rugby legend Doddie Weir ahead of memorial service
Unlike the former Melrose, Scotland, Border Reivers and Newcastle Falcons lock’s funeral, his memorial service is open to the public.
Because the church only has a capacity of 500, the service, at 1pm, will be relayed to his old club’s Greenyards ground nearby so those unable to get in need not miss out.
Those attending the service are requested to wear tartan as a nod to the Blainslie farmer’s penchant for wearing colourful tartan suits.
A spokesperson for the research and support charity the 61-times-capped international set up in 2017, the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, said: “A service to celebrate Doddie’s life will be held at Melrose Parish Church on Monday, December 19, at 1pm.
“Numbers will be restricted within the church, therefore the service will be sound-relayed to the Greenyards, Melrose Rugby Club’s home. All are welcome to attend.
“Please wear any form of tartan, as requested by Doddie. No flowers, please. Donations, if desired, may be sent to My Name’5 Doddie Foundation.”
A statement issued by his family – wife Kathy and sons Hamish, Ben and Angus – added: “We are lucky to have shared our lives with him and we cherish all those memories – his love and warmth, his support and advice, his quick wit and his terrible jokes.
“It is difficult to put into words how much we will miss him.
“MND took so much from Doddie but never his spirit and determination.
“He battled MND so bravely, and whilst his own battle may be over, his fight continues through his foundation until a cure is found for all those with this devastating disease.”
As a tribute to Weir, a minute’s applause and a minute’s silence were observed ahead of Melrose’s 47-13 home win against Stirling County in Tennent’s National League Division 1 on Saturday.
Both teams rested their No 5 jerseys for the game as a further nod to Weir.
Other such tributes were held ahead of games up and down the country, including Edinburgh’s 38-17 home defeat by Munster on Friday.