Football tribute to Calderdale paramedics who died on the same day

Friends and colleagues of two Calderdale paramedics who died on the same day have raised nearly £2,000 by playing a charity football match in their honour.

By sarah fitton
Thursday, 1st July 2021, 9:00 am
Andrew Milner, left, and Mark Harrison who played in the match

Mark Stanley who worked at Halifax and then Todmorden ambulance stations and had been a paramedic for more than 30 years, died in April 2020 after contracting coronavirus.

Tragically, on the same day, Dave Oates - who was based at Brighouse and Bradford ambulance stations - also died, from motor neurone disease.

On Saturday, the two men’s fellow paramedics got together for a charity football match in their memory.

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The Stanley Oates Cup, held in Liversedge, was organised by Glynn Whittaker, Graham Bickerdike and Steve Tonks, who worked with Mark and Dave.

They arranged a similar event last year to remember the two men, who they described as “amazing paramedics”, and hope to make it an annual fundraising event.

“It was a fantastic day,” said Graham.

“It was so good to get people together after so long apart.

“Both Dave and Mark helped a lot of people all over West Yorkshire and will have affected a lot of lives doing the job.

“They were two guys who dedicated their lives to their work serving the public.”

The match was attended by both Mark and Dave’s widows, Jacqueline Stanley and Samantha Oates, who chose which charities the event’s proceeds will go to - Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team and Scotty’s Little Soldiers, which helps children whose parents have died while serving in the armed forces.

It saw paramedics from Bradford Ambulance Station - playing as Bradford Ambo - pitted against a team from Halifax and Brighouse ambulance stations - Brigax.

The Bradford Team won the match 3-0. Man of the match was Joe Shepherd.