FORMER Celtic star Stuart Gray has passed away at the age of 50 following a cancer battle, the club has confirmed.
The son of Scotland and Leeds hero Eddie, Gray came through the ranks at Parkhead, spending six years at the Hoops in which he made 28 appearances.
The Hoops wrote: “Everyone at #CelticFC is deeply saddened by the news that former Celt, Stuart Gray has passed away after illness at the age of 50.
“The Celtic players will wear black armbands in tribute to Stuart at today’s game against Ross County. Rest in Peace Stuart, YNWA”
After loan spells at Bournemouth and Morton, the Scotland Under-21 cap then joined Tommy Burns at .
A talented left sided player, Gray’s career continued south of the border with spells at Rushden and Diamonds, Oxford Utd,Town and Guiseley.
The club paid tribute to their former midfielder – who was recently diagnosed with stage four cholangiocarcinoma – a cancer that forms in the bile ducts.
He was told that by the time this cancer begins tosymptoms, it is usually too advanced for surgery, which is currently the only known cure – with the situation complicated by the fact he was also suffering from a chronic liver disease.
Fans and well wishers had raised £50,000 to help with his treatment via a GoFundMe page set up by his brother Nick.
While some of the treatments for Stuart’sare widely available on the NHS, some of the newer and more experimental treatments are less readily available and very costly.
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He said recently how thankful he was for all the support, writing: “To all the people who have donated and sent messages and good wishes, I want to say how deeply thankful I am to each and every one of you. It means the world to me and my family to see the support we have.Stuart x”
“Unfortunately, time is not on my side, and to wait for approval of these various experimental treatments, and then for the treatments to be administered by the NHS, will likely take years.
“Accessing theseand treatments privately is costly and can be difficult.
“My family and I will be posting regular updates along the way and will be partaking in various fundraising efforts to help pay for any treatment that may be needed in the coming months and, God willing, years.
“Any help or support you can offer during this process would be appreciated more than you will ever know.”
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