Tributes paid after death of Sunderland Fans' Museum star Angela Mills

The family of one of the leading lights of Sunderland’s Fans’ Museum has been paying tribute after her death.

Angela Mills, 58, passed away suddenly last month. Her cousin – and Fans’ Museum founder – Michael Ganley said she had been a huge part of the team and had kept everyone in line.

Angela joined the Fans’ Museum team just over two years ago and had played an ‘essential’ role in the team: “Angela was soft-hearted but very stern as well,” said Michael.

"She would not let anybody mess about.”

Angela MillsAngela Mills
Angela Mills
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Her loss would be felt by everyone involved with the Museum, he added: "It is heart-breaking for the rest of the team, not just myself as her cousin.

"A lot of them had a massive connection with her. She brought a lot of love and passion to the place,” said Michael.

"We have had a lot of fun and she is going to be sadly missed by the full team.”

Angela’s daughter Kirbey said she had been ‘Super Mam’ to her and brother Daniel: “She was such a special woman,” she said

Angela with SAFC FA Cup captain Bobby KerrAngela with SAFC FA Cup captain Bobby Kerr
Angela with SAFC FA Cup captain Bobby Kerr
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"She raised my brother and I on her own, I still don’t know how she did it. She was such a giver and cared for everyone she met.

"She always encouraged us to do what we wanted and make the best of life. She always lived for the moment and grabbed whatever came her way with two hands. She had a heart of gold.”

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Angela worked in youth and community service for 30 years until she was made redundant.

Angela with members of the Fans Museum team and Boro legend Bernie SlavenAngela with members of the Fans Museum team and Boro legend Bernie Slaven
Angela with members of the Fans Museum team and Boro legend Bernie Slaven

“As we grew up, she studied and she got her degree later in life, which was a massive inspiration to us,” said Kirbey.

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"She lived for her work and making any difference she would, to young people especially. She specialised in helping young people who had learning difficulties and disabilities. This was her passion and what she devoted her time to.”

Losing her beloved job had been ‘devastating’ for Angela, said Kirbey, but the Fans’ Museum had been a new lease of life: "Working at the museum helped her get back into doing what she loved so much and brought her so much joy.

"I know she had a lot of special times and memories with everyone that worked there.”

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