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Mum’s heartbreak as ‘wonderful’ Royal Navy son dies month after getting back ache

A grieving mother has paid tribute to her Royal Navy son who tragically lost his battle to cancer.

Mark Richardson, 55, died on July 4 – just one month after getting back ache, the first signal of the deadly disease.

Mr Richardson’s heartbroken mum, Patricia, 79, of Sutton, described her son as “lovely, wonderful, kind and full of life” and says she is so proud of his career in the Armed Forces that spanned 32 years and he had seven medals.

The dad-of-two grew up in Bransholme and achieved many commendations as an engineer in the Navy, including gaining his green beret after passing the commando course at 40-years-old.

He was also commended by the Queen for his work.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Mr Richardson was told to stay away from hospital and sadly nothing could be done to save him.


“Mark was diagnosed with cancer after developing back ache, but nothing could be done to save him and within four weeks he died,” said Mrs Richardson.

“I can’t get over it and will never get over it – no parent wants to bury their child and expect that they will always go first.

“He was so full of life, so fit and active and ate well and looked after himself. He only retired from the Navy last year.”

She added: “He was lovely. So lovely and a wonderful son. He was so kind and full of life and I’m so upset that he’s gone.

“Mark joined the Navy when he was 16 and we were so proud of him and what he achieved.

“He went all around the world and met his wife in Mauritius during the war on Saddam.

“During his career, Mark was a ship’s diver, taught in Iran, worked alongside the Special Boat Service, was commended by the Queen and got his green beret.”

Mark Richardson had many commendations in the Royal Navy
Mark Richardson had many commendations in the Royal Navy

A military funeral was held for Mark, who lived in Bedford, this week in Poole near Dorset.

The charity Special Boat Service Association organised the funeral and supported Mark’s wife.

It was described as “magnificent” by Mrs Richardson, who said that bugles played the Last Post in honour of her son and that he was presented with a flask with a dagger on.

As well as leaving his mum, wife and children behind, Mr Richardson will also be missed by his sister Lesley and brothers Steven, Paul and Philip.

Also paying tribute to Mark, his sister Lesley described him as a “terrific brother” and said that many people knew him as “Richie”.

“Mark was a terrific brother. He was my friend and I will miss him so much,” said Miss Richardson.

“He lived life to the fullest and touched so many lives and was a devoted father.

Mark Richardson was commended by the Queen
Mark Richardson was commended by the Queen

“He always went out of his way to help people and was so generous and thoughtful, kind, determined and humble.

“When Mark had his mind set to do something, he would do it and was so motivated that he would always get it done.

“He was at his happiest when he was surrounded by family and he was extremely grateful for his career in the Navy and all the opportunities it brought and he made so many lifelong friends.

“We are all going to really miss him”.




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