FORMER Weymouth manager Gerry Gow has died aged 64, having lost his battle against cancer.
Gow, whose illustrious career as a player included making more than 350 appearances for Bristol City and playing for Manchester City in the 1981 FA Cup final, as well as spells as Rotherham United and Burnley.
Also capped by Scotland at youth level, he managed the Terras in the 1989-90 season after featuring as a player-manager at Yeovil.
When Stuart Morgan left the Wessex Stadium in January 1989, Weymouth asked John Impey to take the reins in a caretaker role until Gow was asked to become the club’s manager in February 1989.
His first match in charge was when the Terras lost 2-0 at Boston United in a General Motors Vauxhall Conference fixture.
Although not signed as player-manager he was forced to don his kit on one occasion, that being when he appeared as left-back against Maidstone United on 11 April 1989 – the Terras being unable to field 11 fit players on the day.
As Weymouth manager, Gow had seen the club play a total of 83 matches – in all competitions – winning just 23 and drawing the same number.
News of his death was posted on Facebook by his son Chris this morning.
It read: “Today the world fell apart for our family, my beautiful dad passed away in the early hours of the morning, 64 years young he lost his battle to the most disgusting disease. Me and my family are broken hearted and nothing will ever fill the void in our hearts RIP my hero my best mate my dad xxxxx.”
Bristol City, where Gow was a club legend, have also paid tribute to the midfielder. A statement on the club’s website said: “Bristol City Football Club is saddened to learn of the passing of club legend Gerry Gow, at the age of 64.”
It continued: “He leaves behind wife Joolz, son Chris, daughters Rachael and Jennifer, along with nine grandchildren and great grandchild.
“Everyone at the club sends its condolences to Gerry’s family and friends at this sad time.”
A spokesperson for the Terras added: “Weymouth FC are saddened to hear about the unfortunate death of our former manager Gerry Gow.
“Our thoughts are with his family at this sad time.”
Paying tribute to Gow, former Terra Simon Browne told Echosport: “I actually work with Gerry’s wife. I knew he had been ill and we got the phone call from a friend this morning in the office to say it had happened.
“I knew Gerry better in the last few years. We have had a few Christmas nights and social nights together.
“He was a friendly Scotsman but, I guess when you met him at first you were a little bit on edge because he had a reputation of a hard Glaswegian and a tough-tackler but he was good company to be with.”
He added: “Gerry was very modest about his football career.
“He came to the club (Weymouth) with quite a reputation because he had quite a great deal of success with Yeovil. I think the board of directors at the time were hoping he was going to bring the same success down to Weymouth.”
Browne added: “He said he had a great time at Man City and Bristol City and all his times in football.
“I have since joked with him about the 1981 cup final when Ricky Villa danced around half of the Man City team and scored that goal.
“Gerry used to say if he could have got close to him he would have made sure he’d never got the chance to score that goal, because he would have kicked him hard enough that he wouldn’t have carried on the with the run!