I was in the process of preparing my blog this morning, prior to posting about the weekend, when the news of Stevie Chalmers’ passing flashed up on my phone. I could barely believe it and decided to stop writing.
It hasn’t even been a week since fellow Lion, Billy McNeill, passed away. Both men, sufferers of dementia.
Stevie was of course Celtic’s hero amongst heroes on that day in Lisbon when he scored the winning goal against Inter Milan. Though it may have been a personal high point in his career, he served Celtic for a dozen years to equal stature.
In that time, he became one of Celtic’s all time top scorers. Today he remains in the top five along with Jimmy McGrory, Bobby Lennox, Henrik Larsson and Jimmy Quinn.
I doubt there are many words that can express the widespread grief that has engulfed the Celtic families these past seven days. The Celtic community mourns with the families as we say goodbye to yet another legend.
Though death is the sad reality of life, it is nonetheless difficult to process. Losing two stars so close to one another and from the same group of legends, is beyond comprehension.
Like Billy, I never met Stevie, nor did I see him play as I was born after his career had finished. The one story I can recall was one my dad recounted to me.
He told a younger version of me that Stevie Chalmers and his wife had sat in our living room one time many years ago. My dad had ended up filming his daughter Carol’s wedding because he happened to have the equipment at home.
At a later date, Stevie and his wife came round to our house to preview their daughter’s wedding video. My dad was pretty modest about it, but equally proud to tell me, his youngest son, that the man that won the European Cup for Celtic once sat in our living room.
The story never died with my dad and my mum said today they were a really nice couple. I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned it on here before, but happy to tell it now.
Farewell Stevie. You are a legend