Heartbroken husband pays tribute to ‘his beautiful Sue’ as crowds gather in Worthing for her funeral procession

A husband has paid tribute to the ‘love of his life’ after she tragically died from pancreatic cancer.

Friday, 23rd April 2021, 7:21 pm
Updated Friday, 23rd April 2021, 7:36 pm

Sue Murrell died on March 28, just two months after she was given the news her cancer was terminal. She was 64 years old.

Her heartbroken husband, Alan, 66, this week paid tribute to ‘his beautiful Sue’, adding: “She was the love of my life – I feel like a part of me is missing.

“We were joined at the hip – she is my favourite subject, I could talk about Sue for ages.”

Alan and Sue Murrell
Alan and Sue Murrell

Sue, who volunteered for Worthing Neighbourhood Watch (NHW) and Sussex Police, was only last year given the all-clear from bowel cancer.

Alan said the last six weeks of her life were incredibly hard as Sue had suffered two strokes and could no longer talk or write.

“I knew she was dying but she was still my beautiful Sue,” he said, holding back tears.

“I was cuddling and kissing her right to the end – I wanted her to know how much she was loved.”

Sue Murrell at Picnic in the Park Tarring

Alan met Sue back in 1986 and they later both worked for Securicor which had premises in Rustington and Broadwater.

They also started doing charity work together, supporting many community events, including the Worthing 10km run and Littlehampton Bonfire.

And they worked closely with the police, volunteering for the NHW search team after the death of Sarah Payne in 2000.

They also ran Aj’s Taxis Lancing Ltd together for more than 20 years.

Sue with her favourite tipple at the High Sheriffs reception

Sue’s funeral was held on Thursday, April 15, and dozens of people came out to pay their respects as the cortege travelled to Worthing Crematorium.

“It was lovely to see all the people – it was a very moving ceremony,” said Alan.

“I was so proud because they wanted to thank her for what she had done for them.”

He said Sue will be remembered for always having a big smile on her face and for being ‘so full of life’.

Dozens of people came out to pay their respects on the day of Sue Murrell's funeral

He added: “She was always the most glamorous person – she would always have her hair and make-up done. And for five-foot nothing she was incredibly strong willed and brave.”

Sue loved the colour pink and listening to music, Alan said. She was also a big fan of archery and loved to dress up and stay in posh hotels.

And she would treat everybody the same, added Alan, ‘from the managing director to the cleaner’.

He said after they were told about Sue’s cancer, they sat in bed crying their eyes out planning her funeral, before Sue halted the plans and requested they do ‘something more fun’ instead.

Sadly, there was not another opportunity, Alan said, as Sue could not speak towards the end of her life.

But much to Alan’s surprise, he found a piece of paper in her handbag with a list of songs requested by Sue for her funeral.

Dozens of people came out to pay their respects on the day of Sue Murrell's funeral

“Oh god did that make me cry,” said Alan.

“She was thinking of me right until the end.”

Adur and Worthing Neighbourhood Policing Team sergeant, Peter Allan, also paid tribute to Sue.

He said: “I want to offer my deepest condolences to Alan Murrell and Sue’s family and friends at this sad time.

“Sue and Alan have been closely associated with the police in West Sussex, since the creation of the Neighbourhood Watch Search Team, following the death of Sarah Payne in 2000.

“Sue and Alan were key members of the team, which received national recognition for the amazing work they did in supporting Sussex Police in many searches for missing people.

“The team had their own vehicle and were trained by Sussex Police.”

He said at a more local level, Sue and Alan were key members of the Neighbourhood Watch Task Force, where they supported a number of community events.

Sgt Allan added: “Sue was committed to giving back to the local community, and for that I thank her very much. Sue will be missed, but I know her legacy will live on.”

Worthing Neighbourhood Watch (NHW) and the West Downs NHW Task Force also said farewell to one of their greatest and beloved champions: “Despite her slight physique, Sue was afraid of nothing and nobody, as more than one refractory motorist discovered when the Task Force was organising road closures.

“She was also a trained first aider but enjoyed nothing better than leading parades in the task force vehicle and her efforts in the community were by no means restricted to the Task Force.”

Sue also leaves behind her son, Peter, 41, and daughter, Sara, 39, and four grandchildren.

People can make a donation in Sue’s memory to St. Barnabas House via ianhartfd.muchloved.org/tributes or c/o Ian Hart Funeral Service Ltd, 92-94 Broadwater Street West, Worthing.

Dozens of people came out to pay their respects on the day of Sue Murrell's funeral
Dozens of people came out to pay their respects on the day of Sue Murrell's funeral
Dozens of people came out to pay their respects on the day of Sue Murrell's funeral
Dozens of people came out to pay their respects on the day of Sue Murrell's funeral