Heartbroken family of Barry Armstrong say final farewells to 'brightest star in the sky'
Heartbroken mourners said goodbye to Barry Armstrong at the funeral for the adored father-of-one who ‘touched so many people’s lives’.
The 25-year-old died tragically last month following a car crash on Chichester Road, South Shields.
On Friday, February 14, hundreds of mourners gathered at South Shields Crematorium to say their final farewell to the ‘thoughtful and caring’ father.
Many wore baby blue in a touching tribute to Barry, who was also known as Barry Sutton.
Kim Thompson, who led the service, shared stories about the footballer player’s life and his passion for the game which had begun at a young age.
Ms Thompson said: “Let us put our grief to one side, or try to, and focus on the happy days of a young lad who touched so many people’s lives in so many different ways just by simply being who he was.”
Friends and family held Barry in their thoughts as they listened to Ed Sheeran’s Thinking Out Loud and Donna Taggart’s Jealous of the Angels.
Describing the loving family man, she said: “His mam was his whole world. Janine’s relationship with Barry and the lads. It wasn’t mam and son, she was their best friend, someone they could talk to about anything and everything.
“I think you all know, once a friend of Barry’s, you were a friend for life.”
Growing up Barry was a ‘little character’ whose smile was infectious. He attended Whitburn School and had his heart set on becoming a football coach gaining a football scholarship at Gateshead College.
Barry adored his fiance Chloe and was ‘the proudest dad’ to his daughter Scarlett.
Son to Barry and Janine and older brother to Connor and Jordan, Barry worked at Vantec and Calsonic Kansei,.
“Barry and Chloe had big plans for making more memories as a little family like getting married and providing Scarlett with a little sister or brother. And to Conner and Jordan, Barry was the best brother ever always,” said Ms Thompson.
Adding: “One of Barry’s favourite expressions was ‘don’t worry, it will be alright’ and I think you all know he wouldn’t have wanted us to be sad, or to be remembered in tears.
“Barry was never sad, he had everything he ever needed. A family he adored and who adored him and his young life was filled with so many great friendships.”
The service closed with a poem from Barry’s young daughter. It read: “Remembering you is easy, my mammy will tell me every day. I love you, precious daddy, in every single way.
“So fly high with the angels as it’s time to say goodbye. I’ll wave to you every night, to the brightest star in the sky.
“My hero, my daddy. Your daughter I’ll always be. Forever in my heart I’ll keep you always with me.”
Loved ones were able to leave donations for a trust fund set up for Scarlett.
Police are continuing to investigate the crash which happened just before 4.15am on January 24.
A woman and a man, who were passengers, suffered serious injuries.