Snooker legend Willie Thorne has passed away in a Spainish hospital after being placed in an induced coma.
The Leicester born ’85 Classics Champion who announced he had leukaemia in March, had been hospitalized since last week with a low blood pressure.
A statement from his carer Julie O’Neill who set up a GoFundMe page to help pay for Thorne’s treatment, which had passed £19,000 read “It is with a very heavy and broken heart that I have to officially announce that at 1.55am this morning Willie Thorne lost his battle and passed away.
Willie went into septic shock and was not responding to any treatment so the decision was made by the hospital to turn off the machines.
I was with him all the way to his end and reading out messages to him from people.
He passed away very peacefully and without pain listening to his children saying they love him that gives me some comfort in this difficult time.”
Thorne reached two World Championship quarter-finals and won his only ranking title, the Mercantile Credit Classic, in 1982.
He starred an integral part of snooker’s ‘Matchroom Mob’ and went on to become a BBC commentator and cameo TV appearances on the 2007 series of Strictly Come Dancing.
Thorne had filed for bankruptcy after admitting he had borrowed up to £1m in order to feed his gambling addiction.
O’Neill’s statement added: “Thank you so very much to everyone that has been involved in Willie’s care you have all been absolutely amazing and Willie couldn’t have asked for better.
Thank you for all the donations that enabled him to get the care he needed! This will now pay for his funeral.” She stated.