Touching tributes following shock death of popular Burnley man Stephen (39) in Germany

Stephen Trundle
Stephen Trundle

A heartbroken Burnley mum has paid tribute to her hugely popular son who died suddenly during a half marathon in Germany.


Liz Harbour told the Express she was numb with grief following the sudden death of son Stephen Trundle who was just 39-years-old when he collapsed during the race in Dusseldorf, western Germany, the city where he had lived for nearly 14 years.

Former St John the Baptist and St Theodore's RC pupil Stephen had set up his own business, Vampire Vape, in Dusseldorf with business partner Simon Lord, a venture which started in Simon's basement and grew to be a huge success.

Liz said: "We as a family are just feeling numb at the moment. Stephen would light up every room he was in. He was a naughty boy in a funny way, very mischievous and everybody loved him. He had made a real success of his business in Germany, working really hard, and he loved living out there.

"He was a very fit lad who enjoyed playing and watching lots of sports including football, Gaelic football and rugby. Only a month before myself and Stephen's step-father Willy were out in Germany to watch Stephen complete a triathlon."

Stephen married a local woman Ewa in Germany where he had taught himself to speak the language fluently.

Medical tests have revealed that Stephen died from a heart attack brought on by a pulmonary embolism.

Despite living in Germany, Stephen remained a keen Clarets fan and tried to get home as much possible for games and to visit family and friends.

Liz added: "Stephen travelled the world but he never fogot his roots. Burnley was still his home. He was very close to his cousin Lee Cairns and his best friend Joe Anderson, who lives in Australia. They were like brothers."

An adventurous soul who lived life to the full, Stephen had been due to see the Clarets play at Brighton. He had also been home to Burnley recently to buy the new Clarets kit which he would wear to play football with friends in Germany. He was also a keen fan of Bundesliga team Fortuna Düsseldorf.

A memorial walk from Stephen's business to a local park in Dusseldorf took place recently and a round of applause will be given in his memory during the 39th minute of Burnley's home match against Norwich City tomorrow.

He also leaves father Tommy, grandparents Albert and Margaret Trundle, sister Megan and many other relatives and friends.

His funeral will take place on Tuesday, September 24th, with a Requiem Mass at St John the Baptist RC Church, Ivy Street, at 10-15am where his coffin will be led by friend Phil Graham, followed by interment at St John the Divine, Cliviger.