THE family of a popular lollipop man who died of Covid-19 have coined in thousands of pounds for a Barrhead charity after hosting a huge get-together in his name.

Scores of people donned their best costumes for a Hallowe’en disco at Crofthead Bowling Club last month to remember born and bred Neilston man Robert Fox, who died in February aged 73.

The event included a buffet, raffle, games and music courtesy of local DJ David Finnigan, who offered up his services for free when he heard about the fundraiser in memory of his former football coach.

Following restrictions on gatherings and services at the time of his death, it was a belated but fitting send-off for the fun-loving grandfather, which, along with an online fundraiser and cash donations, raised £3,866 for Include Me 2 Club (IM2C).

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“For everybody to put this amount money towards his name is just fantastic,” his son, also called Robert, told the Barrhead News. “I think he would have been blown away and humbled by how much he meant not just to his own family, but the community in Neilston. 

“It was a night my dad would have thoroughly enjoyed. Having the disco and getting dressed up was such a winner because he loved Hallowe’en, a wee drink and a sing song.

“My mum Phyllis was a wee bit unsure whether she wanted to go, but when she got there she had a great night. 

“It was amazing to see her proud of my dad and for her to see what people really thought of him. It gave her a wee boost and put a wee smile on her face.

“I just want to say a massive thanks from the family to everybody who contributed and donated, to the bowling club for their support and everybody who turned up to make it a memorable night. 

“I don’t think my dad could have had a better send-off, albeit a bit further down the line.”

IM2C supports children, young people and adults with additional support needs and disabilities and the family picked the charity due to Robert’s great way with youngsters.

He doted on his grandchildren and great grandchild and spent the last decade of his life helping kids across the road near Neilston Primary and the Madras Family Centre.

He also brought great excitement to pupils through his special visits to the school and St Thomas’ Primary at Christmas time, dressed as Santa Claus.

After totalling up the final tally, Robert’s wife Phyllis, daughter-in-law Shelley and grandchildren Erin and Jude visited IM2C’s community hub on Barrhead Main Street this month to hand over the cheque.

Paul McIlvenny, the charity’s founder and chair, said: “We are so grateful to Robert’s family for selecting us to raise money for in memory of him. 

“As a lollipop man, he was engrained in the community and all funds raised will go back to children in our community. It is a privilege to be linked with the memory of Robert in this way.”