JOHN MARTIN MADDEN - 8th November 1924 to 22nd April 2012
Sad to report the passing of another great Evertonian and great family man, John Madden. My father was born in the Dingle in the mid 20's, and like his elder half- brother, Alex and his father, also John, was an Evertonian for all of his days. A very early memory was his own father heading down to Wembley in 33 for the the cup final. Father had the good fortune to see the great Dixie Dean play for the Toffees toward the end of the great man's career, but it was Tommy Lawton who was his first real hero. "He was the greatest centre forward I ever saw" to quote daddyo. After his call up during the war, dad settled down to married bliss with his one and only love, other the Toffees of course, his loving wife, Catherine. Despite her family being of the red persuasion it was a marriage made to last ; they would have been celebrating 62 years married this June. Chance lead them to settle in Litherland where he remained for the rest of his days.
For most of his working life dad was a bus conductor (remember them?) working out of the Litherland garage for more than 25 years. Bluekipper readers of a certain vintage who travelled into town on the likes of the 52 or 55 might well remember him. Anyhow, back to football. One of his greatest memories was the night Everton won promotion back to the top flight at Oldham in 54. He loved to tell the tale how he bought the very last ticket for the last of the football specials which left Lime Street (or was it Exchange?) for big match in Oldham.
By the early 60's he was father to 6, and this golden period for him was matched by a golden period for the Mighty Blues on the pitch. Family commitments for the 40 something meant he was unable to travel to Wembley in 66, but he loved to tell the tale how his eldest lad, also John, cracked his head on the ceiling of the living room when the equalizer went in, so high did he jump in celebration.
Like all of us he savoured the great team of the 80's. He was at Rotterdam with the family, of course, but another abiding memory of his from this period was the semi at Highbury against Southampton in 1984. Father kept a season ticket until about 5 or so seasons ago, when his failing health meant he could no longer climb the steps to his seat in the upper Gwladys. He died at Fazakerley hospital on Sunday gone, after a very short illness. He leaves behind him a big family; just last year he became a great-grandfather twice over. Very happy to report that it is choc-a-bloc full of Evertonians, not one red amongst us.
Good night and God bless, dad. We love you. Until we meet again in that Goodison Park in the sky.
Funeral Mass at Our Lady Queen of Peace, Litherland at 10.15am Monday 30th April, followed by burial at Ford Cemetery.
The Madden family, Litherland.
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