A series of first-hand accounts describing moments that made us fall in love with Everton, 'My Everton' is a new weekly offering here on evertonfc.com, bringing you the most-treasured memories of fans, players, and staff, both past and present.
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Hold your head up, no more tears, remember all the happy years.
I’m in a place where I’m content, to my Everton heaven, I’ve been sent.
Michael, my husband, passed away very suddenly three years ago.
We recently bought a little plot for an interment of his ashes and the words above were written on top of his urn.
It is a beautiful verse and it means such a lot I have done that for him.
I am so sad Michael is not here anymore but I want to tell his story on his behalf.
I want people to feel the passion Michael had for Everton.
I didn’t watch football until I met him in 1974 but we have all become Evertonians, three generations of the family.
People we got to know told him, ‘I have started looking for the Everton score because of you’.
He absolutely loved Everton and it was infectious.
The remarkable thing is that Michael was from Stockton-on-Tees and we are all 140 miles away in the north east.
In 1966, as a nine-year-old, he watched the FA Cup final when Everton were losing 2-0 to Sheffield Wednesday but went on to win 3-2.
At that moment, he truly fell in love with the Club.
Michael’s first hero was Alan Ball, number 8. Michael was born on the 8th of the 8th, in 1956.
He adored players he felt were completely committed to Everton, Dave Watson for a long time, and he thought Seamus Coleman was brilliant.
Michael loved Mick Lyons, as well, and once met him at a midweek cup match.
Mick Lyons was so impressed he’d travelled that far he promised the next time Michael was at Goodison he'd take him into the dressing room before the game.
That was in the days when Howard Kendall was manager for the first time and all the players in that team were so important in Michael’s life.
He spoke to all of them and Graeme Sharp even gave him his matchday programme, which only made Michael’s passion stronger.
Our son, Duncan, was named after Duncan McKenzie, and he inherited his dad's feelings for Everton and is a Season Ticket holder.
Duncan’s son, Caiden, is 14 and loves Everton as much as his dad and grandad and has been a mascot at a game. Caiden's sister, Ivy, is eight and loved her first Goodison experiences.
Michael went everywhere to watch Everton.
He would set off at silly times every weekend and always have a story to tell when he came home.
Not always about the game, it was often about people he met, or things that happened around the match.
He is not here but I can remember every single thing he told me.
You felt like you were there with him, listening to him talk about a dog jumping up at somebody, or a fan throwing his chips in the air after a goal.
He came back one day talking about the bus on the way to the match. It was jam-packed with football passengers and shoppers.
When it went round a corner, someone fell on top of a lady sitting down. All she could say was, ‘My flippin’ eggs’.
I was with Michael at the Wimbledon game in 1994. I can still see him, jumping up and down on the pitch afterwards.
He picked up a little bit of turf, which will be somewhere in his belongings.
He has every shirt since the early ‘80s and toffees thrown by the Toffee Girl, every programme from when he started going until the day he died.
More than 3,000 badges, as well as mugs and pens.
We could open a little museum.
Michael entered the church to Z-Cars at his funeral and left to Grand Old Team. There was an Everton flag draped over his coffin and everybody wore Everton shirts.
His passing was so sudden and harrowing but it is three years now and you have to try to get on with things.
I have done this for him, he would be so proud, as I am proud. He was a true Evertonian, Everton daft.
But I don’t know if my words explain his love of Everton enough.
By Elizabeth Broadbent, Evertonian