Ulster Rugby has known no greater adversity than the loss of Nevin Spence one year ago this weekend, the club’s chaplain has said.
Nevin died along with his father Noel and brother Graham in one of the country’s worst ever farming accidents.
Speaking on BBC Radio’s Good Morning Ulster programme ahead of the first anniversary of the tragedy this Sunday, Rev Andrew Thompson said it was “an unspeakable loss”.
“Much has changed in the intervening year, but some things will never change,” Rev Thompson said.
“The impact made by these three fine men, both in life and in death, continues to be felt. At the memorial service at Ravenhill, Rory Best concluded his fitting tribute to Nevin by saying, ‘His memory will continue to shape Ulster Rugby for years to come. Nev, we will miss you, but we will never forget you’.
“And the memories of Nevin do live on – of Nevin the player – his dancing feet, his incredible strength, his lion-hearted courage, his pride in the white shirt – and memories of Nevin the person – his radiant smile, his shock of blond hair, his quirky sense of humour, his unassuming, humble demeanour and his quiet but vibrant Christian faith.”
Rev Thompson added: “Ulster Rugby’s loss is huge, but it is miniscule when set beside that of the Spence family.”