Tributes have been paid to a ‘kind-hearted and ‘well-respected’ former pub landlord and ambulance service volunteer who passed away suddenly.
Keith Monk suffered a heart attack at his home in Great Harwood and passed away later at Royal Blackburn Hospital on Sunday, January 18 at the age of 55.
The grandfather-of-five – who had battled through lung cancer and been clear for eight years – ran a milk round before taking over the reins of a pub and club in Clayton-le-Moors.
He also worked as a foreman at Metflex and later at Dewhurst’s in Altham.
Wife of 25 years Kath said he was a ‘soft-hearted fella’ who will be missed across the borough.
She said: “He was a man’s man and loved his dominoes, darts and was a mad Blackburn Rovers fan. He was like the bionic man really.
“Nothing fazed him and he just fought through everything. He went suddenly and it’s a massive shock.
“He was a very well known man and all day since people have been contacting us and offering their condolences which means a great deal.
“He was a very soft-hearted fella and gave you anything and everything you wanted. He will be missed by a lot of people from all over.”
Keith ran the Middle Club in Clayton-le-Moors for 12 months before later running the Olde England Forever pub for six years in the 1990s.
After leaving Dewhurst’s he worked as a Lancashire Ambulance Service volunteer for around 10 years and was stationed from home.
He enjoyed racing pigeons and had a pen in Great Harwood, and also played dominoes with friends at the Leisure Hour Working Men’s Club.
Kath, 66, who is a retired stewardess at the club in Great Harwood, said: “He loved his volunteer work and was stationed from home.
“He helped a lot of people over the years and got attached to a lot of them.
“He was that type of person and was very kind-hearted. He loved to have a laugh and a crack with people.”
Geoff Hadgett, from Clayton-le-Moors, who knew Keith from his time at the Olde England Forever, said he was an ‘absolute star’.
The 43-year-old said: “He was a bloke’s bloke and had a great sense of humour and liked a laugh with the lads.
“He was a brilliant landlord, an absolute star.
“He didn’t take any mess and if you were right with him he was right with you.
“He was very well respected by everybody and it’s a big shock when we found out he died. He’s one of those guys people remember.”