Tributes paid to ‘wonderful, charismatic’ Simon Acheson who passed away after cycling

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The death of a well-known cyclist who is believed to have taken a heart attack after a bike ride has led to an outpouring of tributes from friends and fellow cyclists.

Simon Acheson collapsed on Sunday past after cycling with his home club Square Wheelers, who formed a special guard of honour at his funeral in Benburb’s Clonfeacle Parish Church on Thursday.

Club members wore their club top in tribute to Simon who used his passion for cycling to raise funds for charities.

Cycling Ulster Assistant Chairman, Tommy McCague who recently had the honour of cycling with Simon in Donegal at a supporting Ovarian Cancer event organized by another member of Square Wheelers said: “Simon was a gentleman, always looking out for his fellow cyclists, a very unassuming man who loved life.

“The sport has lost a dear friend, the CU executive and the wider cycling community pass on our sympathies to his family and his club, Square Wheelers.”

A spokesperson for Square Wheelers cycling club said the organisation was devastated with the news. “We are still coming to terms with the news of the untimely passing of our beloved club member and Committee member Simon Acheson.

“We would like to give our heartfelt condolences to Simon’s family, Ann and his friends at this difficult time.”

Cycling organisations across Northern Ireland joined in the tributes including Island Wheelers and Clogher Valley Wheelers.

On social media, a fellow cyclist posted: “Hard to fathom such a wonderful charismatic and fun guy is no longer with us. He was so fit and you could be assured there was going to be a big hill involved in the circuit if he was leading.

“He was first in to volunteer help or change a puncture and if I had a pound for every time he laughed and coaxed me up a hill with shouts of “Feel the burn!”, well that would be something.

“What a wonderful gift it was to have met Simon.”