Moving tributes to Dave Shephard who died from heart attack in his north Hull sweet shop

By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 19 Apr 2017

Tributes have poured in for a popular north Hull sweet shop owner who has died after suffering a heart attack in the store where he spent his life.

Dave Shephard, 70, who has been described by his wife as a "legend in north Hull", served generations of customers at Shephards Sweet Shop in Greenwood Avenue with his wife Carol, 69, after the pair took over the business from his parents in 1982.

Mr Shephard sadly died in the intensive care unit at Hull Royal Infirmary on Good Friday, surrounded by his friends and family, after he failed to regain consciousness following a sudden cardiac arrest in the store on Tuesday.

He leaves behind Carol, his wife of more than 40 years, who was by his side throughout and helped him run the sweet shop business which has been in the family since 1937.

"Words aren't possible to say how much I will miss him," Mrs Shephard said. "There was no one else for me. I will remember everything about him.

Dave and Carol Shephard on their silver wedding anniversary

"He was just wonderful. He had his moments like we all do but he was just perfect. He could be a little monkey but we have always done such a lot together.

"He was my life and I can't imagine life without him."

The pair first met as teenagers at a party in 1966 and instantly clicked. However, Mr Shephard, who joined the RAF aged 16, was sent out to fight in Aden for two years only a month into their relationship.

The couple sent letters to each other during his time in conflict and in 1971, the pair tied the knot at St John Newland Church.

Mr Shephard, who grew up at the Greenwood Avenue store, became a partner in the family business with his mother in 1977. When she died five years later, Mr and Mrs Shephard took control of the business.

Dave was popular with all his customers in north Hull
 

During their time at the helm, Mr Shephard became a popular figure in the community, known for dishing out sweets to the children of north Hull and raising money for charities such as Help For Heroes.

Following the sweet shop owner's sudden death, scores of mourners came to pay their respects as dozens of flowers were left in the shutters of the shop and moving messages from children were slipped through the door, much to Mrs Shephard's surprise.

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"We have always tried to help the community and as a family we have always been there for the people," she said.

"Dave's relationship with the community was wonderful. They thought the world of him and we have had a lot of people come in who went to school with him and who knew him socially.

"He always had a way with kids. He never spoke down to them and he always spoke to them on his level.

"The response has been wonderful, unbelievable in fact, and I never thought people would be bringing flowers like they have."

Dave and Carol ran Shephards in Greenwood Avenue since 1982
 

Mr Shephard's only sister Sandra, 77, has been at Carol's side throughout. She said she cannot imagine life without her baby brother.

She said: "I was always close to my brother and it's only recently I've realised what he meant to the community. He was a workaholic but loved what he did. He could never stop working behind that counter.

"This was his life. The customers loved him and he loved them and it's only now when I've seen the tributes on Facebook and the flowers that Carol's received that you realise just how loved he was.

"He was very affectionate and we were both affectionate to each other. My two sons looked up to him as a father. If they ever had any problems we would always come to David and say, 'what do you think we should do?'

"I just can't imagine life without him. He was the person I always turned to and he was just a rock for all of us."

Mrs Shephard has asked that donations be made to the intensive care unit at Hull Royal Infirmary in memory of her late husband.



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