'Sickening' raid on pensioner's home days after his death
CLOSE friends of disabled pensioner Eddie Hindle are "sickened" after his home was burgled just days after he died.
The 74-year-old retired chief ship's engineer – who was the victim of a brutal assault two years ago by thieves – died at Grimsby's Diana, Princess Of Wales Hospital following a short illness.
On Saturday, it was discovered that his home had been broken into, and electrical equipment and food were stolen.
Today, his friend Anita Barratt, 43, who described Eddie as a "father to me and my family", said: "We have not even had the chance to lay him to rest and this has happened.
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"Even in death, he is a victim. We are sickened. You would never think of anyone doing anything so low.
"At any time, the burglary of someone's home is bad, but when he has not been laid to rest it is appalling."
Mr Hindle's death occurred a month short of the second anniversary of an assault by two men as Eddie returned home on his mobility scooter.
As reported, Mr Hindle – who was undergoing treatment for lung cancer – was left with broken wrists and severe bruising to his face and ribs, following the sickening attack on July 11, 2010.
He was travelling home after watching the World Cup final when he was beaten outside his home – all for his watch and bracelets.
Kristian Whyte, 27, was sentenced to eight years in prison, while Jamie Ford, 32, who admitted his part in the attack, was jailed for six years.
Anita, who did Eddie's washing and shopping 2
and hosted the pensioner every Christmas, said: "His quality of life went downhill after the attack two years ago. He became progressively ill."
The charitable pensioner had supported a number of causes during his life, including Help For Heroes, Macmillan Cancer Care and the RNLI, whose stickers adorned his front door.
A TV, video player and DVD player were stolen on Saturday, along with food from the cupboards and fridge of his kitchen at the home in The Square, off Weelsby Street, Grimsby.
The police were alerted to the crime by neighbour John Green, who said: "It is disgusting. There are so many people who loved him. It is totally gutting. "Whoever did this is the lowest of the low."
Paul Dempster, 53, Eddie's former shipmate and a resident of The Square, said: "I was at sea with him for 23 years.
"I have always classed him as my second dad after I lost my own.
"We haven't even had the chance to say our farewells to him and then something like this happens.
"This area is for retired fishermen, not for thieves to target."
The ex-trawlerman served on the Ross Cheetah and on the Spright with Eddie, who was a keen Liverpool FC supporter and renamed his home "the other Anfield".
Paul added: "Everyone had a lot of respect for Eddie."
A funeral service will be held at 1.40pm on Friday, June 15, at Grimsby Crematorium. Mourners are invited to wear Liverpool strips.
Donations are being received in his memory in aid of Cancer Research UK by Sentiments funeral directors at: 17, Chantry Lane, Grimsby, DN31 2LP.
A Humberside Police spokeswoman confirmed a burglary had taken place at The Square between 1pm on Thursday and Saturday, June 2.
She said three people had been charged and had appeared in court.
Steven McKenzie, 58, Norman Parry, 70, and Joanna Ayres, 31, all of Grimsby, deny burglary at a property in The Square, Weelsby Street, Grimsby, involving stealing hand tools and electrical equipment, between May 31 and June 2.
McKenzie and Ayres also deny handling stolen hand tools, belonging to Mr Hindle, but Parry admits this part of the charge.
The cases were adjourned by Grimsby magistrates until July 27 and the trio were all granted conditional bail. The cases are due to be committed to Grimsby Crown Court.