Death of Mr Stuart Donaldson, aged 82

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A MAN who survived a fall down a ravine and spent months recovering from his injuries has died of pneumonia in hospital.

Mr Stuart Donaldson was 78 when he fell 60 feet down a ravine near Ripon while out walking on Boxing Day 2007.

He was unconscious for several hours before being rescued by air ambulance and spent five months recuperating from the effects of head injuries and hypothermia. He was paralysed down his right hand side for several weeks.

He was treated in hospital in Middlesbrough before being transferred to Calderdale Royal Hospital.

A keen golfer and fan of rugby union, Mr Donaldson, of Lightcliffe, was involved in numerous organisations. He was a member of Halifax Rotary Club and St John’s Church, Coley, where he served as treasurer for a number of years.

The grandfather-of-five was a member of Lightcliffe Golf club and had also served as president, captain, treasurer and secretary. He was the club’s representative on the Huddersfield and Halifax Golf Union and handicap and scratch secretary for the league.

Mr Donaldson is survived by his wife Joyce, sister Stephanie, two sons, Andrew and Richard, daughters-in-law Jackie and Linda, and grandchildren Alex, David, Jack, Sydney and Genevieve.

Andrew, who also lives in Lightcliffe, said: “My father was a big golf fan and was always very active. After he retired he would play three 18-hole rounds of golf a week.

“He showed great determination and strength of character in recovering from the accident. He got back to walking and would struggle round the village on two sticks. He was always cheerful, always smiling. He even managed to drive again and took my mum on a couple of trips to Ilkley.”

Last year Mr Donaldson suffered complications after surgery for gall stones. “His progress seemed to go into reverse after that,” said Andrew.

The funeral will be held on Tuesday, January 31, at 11.45am at St John’s Church, Coley.