Washington bodybuilder’s death sparks emotional tribute

Sean James and, below, his brother Steven with Male Order.
Sean James and, below, his brother Steven with Male Order.
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FAMILY and friends held an emotional tribute night for a popular Wearside man who died at the age of just 30.

Sean James, of Sulgrave in Washington, died in a tragic accident at his home, just two days before his 31st birthday.

ON SONG: Steven James and band members of 'Male Order' are performing at the Usworth and District Social Club, Washington in remembrane of Stevens brother.

ON SONG: Steven James and band members of 'Male Order' are performing at the Usworth and District Social Club, Washington in remembrane of Stevens brother.

His loved ones gathered for an event in honour of the much-loved semi-pro body builder, who is remembered as the “life and soul of the party”.

Former boyband Male Order, which included Sean’s brother Steven, reunited to put on one last show as a final farewell.

Steven, 37, said: “ It was so tragic when Sean died, he was still young.

“Everyone was so upset at the time so I am absolutely over the moon that we came back together to give Sean a proper goodbye.

“We discussed it at the wake. We decided that we didn’t want everyone moping because my brother was a larger than life character.

Steven, a full-time entertainer who is in duo Just James, said: “We invited family, friends and acquaintances to help out and come along and see us.

“It was an absolutely fantastic night. It was a huge success. I’d like to say thank you to everyone who went along.”

Male Order, who split in 2007, consisted of brothers Paul and Peter Weight, as well as Steven, who is from Sulgrave, but now lives in Durham.

They reformed to perform at Usworth and District Social Club in Manor Road, Washington, in tribute to Sean.

Although Sean was not a member of the band he used to go to gigs with them.

Lead singer Paul, 31, of Rickleton, Washington, said: “He was like a roadie and security at the same time, he always came with us.”

He added: “We decided to do this gig because at the time Sean died everyone was too upset to give him a proper tribute. The four of us were close from a young age so we all knew each other really well.

“He used to come along with the band and he used to get more girls than the rest of us.

“The whole night was to say farewell to him properly. We had other acts lined up too, including Billy Black, Lorraine Crosby, Ruby Kind, Christine Simmone and Just James.”

Also in tribute to Sean, the Atlas Gym, in Washington, where he trained has pictures up of him from when he first joined the gym to when he was almost ready for competition.

All proceeds made from the tribute night will go to the Bobby Moore Fund, which raises money for Cancer Research, and hundreds of pounds are set to be raised. The charity was close to the family’s hearts as the condition has affected a loved one.

Paul added: “That was a charity that meant a lot to Sean, it is what he would have wanted.”