Ex-Tottenham Hotspur player and Motor Neurone Disease campaigner dies

Del Deanus, who grew up on the St Raphael’s Estate in Neasden, was diagnosed with muscle-wasting condition four years ago

A former footballer from Neasden who highlighted the plight of Motor Neurone Disease sufferers after being diagnosed at the age of just 34 has died.

Del Deanus, bravely championed the cause after he was diagnosed with the muscle-wasting condition in 2008.

The 38-year-old grew up in the St Raphael’s Estate and attended Brentfield Primary School and Sladebrook High School.

His sporting talents were recognised at an early age and he played for the England schoolboy squad alongside Ryan Giggs and Nick Barmby.

He was on the books of Tottenham Hotspur before moving on to Southall Town and Northwood where he coached and Edgware and Enfield Town as a joint-manager.

Following his diagnosis he wrote a book titled ‘Memories Never Die’ about his experience.

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The proceeds went to the Motor Neurone Disease Association, a charity which Mr Deanus raised thousands of pounds for through a charity sporting events.

In December 2010, he became a father for the first time when his wife Emma gave birth to their daughter Megan.

He sadly died last Thursday - two weeks after the birth of his second child, a son named Edward.

Paying tribute to his lifelong friend, Jerry Lyons, 40, said: “Del was big in stature but bigger in courage. MND is a horrific disease but he faced it with bravery, dignity and humour. Despite fighting his illness for four years I never once heard him feel sorry for himself or moan about the situation.

“He was a character and everyone who knew him has a ‘remember when Del did this’ type story.

“He will be very sadly missed by his family, his many friends and the non league football community.”