We regret to announce that Joe Shellhorn passed away peacefully at home overnight of 2/3 April, aged 86. He was awaiting a heart valve replacement, which sadly did not take place in time.
Joe, who was born in Doncaster, was widely known in athletics largely due to his role as a Field Events official. Joe came into athletics in the early 1970’s due to his two daughters’ participation in the sport while at school. Moving to Chester in 1972 from Cheltenham, along with his wife Ruth, they soon became involved in helping and officiating. They rapidly became known as accomplished officials and Joe mentored many officials over the years he was involved in athletics. Joe was due to receive the British Athletics long service award in recognition of his 40 years’ service as an official at the annual Officials’ Conference on 19th April 2015.
Although Joe’s wife sadly passed away in 1988, he continued his involvement in the sport and officiated at all levels. He was involved with his local club, which is now West Cheshire AC, taking on a number of
committee roles throughout his time in Chester and was its current president. For many years he was the officials secretary for Cheshire County AA and was instrumental in ensuring that the county and its clubs, recruited officials. He was also the current President of the Cheshire County AA.
Joe enjoyed the sport immensely and made many friends in all parts of the World. He was just as happy at a local schools event as being at an International level meeting. On a number of occasions he was at the World Master’s T&F Championships in a variety of countries working with the technical team of officials – with many amusing stories to tell.
We will miss him greatly and we send our condolences to his family. The words sent by Malcolm Rogers on learning of the news sum up Joe : : “Sad news indeed. Joe was a mentor to hundreds of officials and was one of life’s absolute gentlemen”.
Joe’s funeral will be held at Blacon Crematorium, Chester at 2pm on Friday 24th April. There will be a celebration of his life after the service at a venue to be decided. In order to gauge numbers would all who are intent on attending please send an e-mail to Joe’s daughter : [email protected] ASAP. Thank you.
The family have requested no flowers. Donations can be made to the British Heart Foundation and the Chester Heart Support Group with which Joe was involved.
Alan Morris & John Driscoll