MUCH-LOVED ice-hockey mascot, husband and dad-of-seven Paul Dodd passed away last week.
Tributes have flooded in for the popular Deeside Dragons mascot from Shotton who died aged 42.
Deeside Dragons head coach Steve Fellows said Paul who also worked at Morrisons in Connah’s Quay had been a key part of the ice-hockey community.
“Originally he was the mascot for the Flintshire Freeze,” he said. “He was known as Freezie and dressed up as a polar bear.
“When we reformed about three years ago, Freezie became redundant so he became Dylan the Dragon.
“He purchased the new outfit. It was all done off his own bat and he was very well-received by fans.
“Nothing was ever too much trouble for him,” he added.
“A typical example was a time he drove to my son’s birthday party dressed up as Dylan.
“All the kids loved it because they knew him at the games,” he said.
“Everyone will miss him. And it’s not just Deeside, it’s the whole ice-hockey community. We’ve had loads of emails and messages of condolence from other clubs and players and the fans – everybody.
“He was very passionate about ice hockey and his partner and kids too, they’d come on the bus with the team.
“It was a very close bond between the family and the players. It’s like family. All the players are so sad. He will be so missed.”
Paul leaves behind wife of 15 years Liza and children Kurt, 21, Simon, 20, Ian, 17, Lauren, 20, Bradley, 15, Trinity, 14, and Angel, 11.
His funeral will take place next Thursday, August 28, at St Mark’s Church in Saltney at 12.15pm, then on to Chester Crematorium for 1.20pm.
It will be followed by drinks at the Navy Club in Connah’s Quay.
Liza has requested that Deeside Dragon players and fans wear their club tops, and family and friends wear Superman or superhero-themed clothing.
Liza asked for any donations to be made to mental health charity Mind.