Black Cats legend Jimmy Montgomery will be honoured by the Queen for his outstanding contribution to the community of Wearside tomorrow.
The FA Cup winning goalkeeper was awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list and, as is the right of all recipients, has chosen to have it presented amongst friends and family in his home city.
It’s an honour for me, my family, Sunderland football club and the city.Jimmy Montgomery
He will be formally presented with his decoration by Lord Lieutenant of Tyne and Wear Mrs Susan Winfield OBE in a civic reception in the Mayor’s Parlour.
The British Empire Medal is awarded to people in recognition for outstanding services to their country, community, profession and walk of life.
Jimmy has been honoured for his work as an ambassador for the city and supporter of numerous charities and community causes.
“I was flabbergasted when I was first told I was to receive this medal, but obviously also highly delighted,” he said.
“It’s an honour for me, my family, Sunderland football club and the city.
“The Lord Lieutenant’s Office said I could choose where to have the medal presented and I thought the civic centre was the most fitting place, right in the middle of Sunderland surrounded by friends and family with my wife Joy.”
The Presentation Ceremony will also be attended by Mayor of Sunderland Coun Barry Curran,, Deputy Lord Lieutenant Dr Norman Taylor, and civic guests.
“As Mayor of Sunderland on behalf of everyone in the city, I’d like to congratulate Jimmy Montgomery on being awarded the British Empire Medal,” said Coun Curran.
“He fully deserves this honour as someone who never fails to represent himself, his family, his city and his football club with the greatest dignity, grace and humour.”
SAFC Commercial Director Gary Hutchinson will represent the club at tomorrow’s ceremony: “Jimmy is held in such high esteem by everyone at the club and in the city,” he said.
“He is hugely respected throughout the football world and he is much loved by Sunderland supporters, young and old alike.
“For him to be honoured in this way is a fitting tribute to all he has achieved in his career and recognition of the many years of service he has given not only to football, but to the city of Sunderland and to the many charities and good causes he has worked tirelessly for.
“He is an integral part of our Sunderland family and we are delighted that he has been given such a prestigious honour.”