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Ryan Passey stabbing: Parents lead heartbreaking tributes at 24-year-old's funeral

By Clare Butler | Stourbridge | News | Published:

"I wish I had told you how much I loved you more often, because I did and always will."

The funeral of stab victim Ryan Passey at St James' Church, Wollaston

These are the heartbreaking words of Ade Passey, the father of 24-year-old Ryan Passey who was stabbed to death in Stourbridge last month.

Ryan's dad led the tributes to his son yesterday morning, as he was laid to rest at a service at St James Church in Wollaston.

Reverend Nick Kaleniuk, who was leading the service, read out a statement on Ade's behalf.

It said: "This is a message a father should never have to write. So I thought I would write my message in a wish list.

"I wish you were still coming into my bedroom to pinch my boxer shorts and I wish you were still leaving the bathroom in a mess.

Ryan Passey

"But more than anything I wish I had said how much you meant to me and we could still be watching Only Fools and Horses together.

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"I wish I had told you how much I loved you more often. Because I did and always will."

A message from Ryan's mother Gill, added: "I miss that big smile and holding you in my arms. Thank you son for the best 24 years of my life. I love you so much and you are my pride and joy."

Other tributes came from Ryan's best friend, Jordan Poole.

Tributes outside the church

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Jordan, who had known his best friend since they were just four, tearfully spoke about his and Ryan's special bond: "I always thought the day I would be standing and speaking about Ryan would be at his wedding.

"We rarely spent a day apart. He played football like how he lived his life - with passion, loyalty and care for the people around him.

"In the future, my children will know everything about him. The truth is no one will ever forget him. You were my brother, my best friend, my hero, Ryan.

Mourners and team players from Ryan's former football clubs Wrens Nest and Stourbridge Athletics carried Ryan's coffin into the church with white roses, as football shirts from various football teams lined the entrance.

Tributes outside the church
Ryan Passey's funeral

One tribute, left on a white England football shirt, read: "Will always be thinking of you. Until we meet again lad, love Tommo."

The service, which was led by Reverend Nick Kaleniuk, saw tributes read out from friends and family across the hour.

Montages of pictures from Ryan's life were played on a big screen inside, to the backdrop of songs selected by Jordan and his father Mark Poole, alongside Ryan's mother and father Gill and Ade and step-father Phil.

Lukas Graham's song Funeral held poignant words as it opened the service, as crowds filed the church with little standing room.

The acoustic version of Charlie Puth's See You Again was played to pictures of Ryan and Jordan's nights out and holidays abroad.

A performance of Michael Jackson's You Are Not Alone also took place.

The funeral of Ryan Passey

Sam Smith's Lay Me Down was played to family pictures of Ryan growing up, while a video showing Ryan and Jordan singing 'every little thing gonna be all right' by Bob Marley was shown at the end of the service.

Candles could also be lit in celebration of Ryan's life, with the chance to write a memory card.

Family then left the church to go to Stourbridge Crematorium, while others headed to the Raven Pub, in Brierley Hill, to raise a glass in his memory.

A programme of service given out held a message from Ryan, saying: "When you think of me, try not to cry because my life has been cut short. Smile because you gave me life, and much more than that, you gave me a life I loved."

Talented footballer Ryan, who was from Quarry Bank, died after being stabbed to death at Chicago's in Stourbridge town centre last month.

Tributes poured in, with dozens of bouquets of flowers left outside Chicago's following his death.

The nightclub, which has since re-opened, stayed shut yesterday.

Mr Passey's family launched a campaign to have the venue closed for good following his death but licensing chiefs at Dudley Council instead ordered management to tighten security.

Kobe Murray, 19, of The Broadway, Dudley, has pleaded not guilty to murder and is due to stand trial in January

Clare Butler

By Clare Butler
Senior Reporter - @CButler_Star

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