Well-known Isle of Wight football personality Gerry O'Rourke has died at the age of 83.

Gerry was born on December 26, 1938, to John and Annie O’Rourke, in the little shale mining village of Oakbank not far from Edinburgh.

He was the youngest of three children and brother to Isobel (now deceased) and Mary who still lives in Scotland not far from where they were born.

He was fiercely patriotic – especially if the opposition was England.

Gerry was not a keen scholar and football was his greatest love from a very early age.

After leaving school he did various jobs, including working on a farm and delivering lemonade, following which, in the late 1950s, he did his National Service with the Scots Guards, serving in Germany and at Windsor.

He loved to tell stories of being on patrol at Windsor Castle.

He was extremely proud of his military service and represented his regiment at athletics and boxing.

On leaving the army, he settled in the Windsor area, working as a lathe turner.

Isle of Wight County Press: Gerry O'Rourke was a proud Scotsman.Gerry O'Rourke was a proud Scotsman.

He met his wife, Jenny, on a blind date in 1964.

They married in 1966 and set up home in Staines where they had three children, Denise, Duncan and Jamie, and during this time Gerry began working in the building industry.

Gerry had a very successful football career, playing for Hayes and Hendon before signing as a semi-professional player at Wimbledon where he played until 1973.

Read AFC Wimbledon tribute to Gerry HERE

While at Hendon, he was selected for a Middlesex Wanderers tour in Iceland and also won Scottish amateur international caps against England, Wales and Ireland.

On leaving Wimbledon, he played for Chelmsford City, Dulwich Hamlet, Epsom and Ewell, Southall and Staines Town.

The family moved to the Isle of Wight in 1979 and Gerry soon became involved in the local football scene, both as a player and later as a manager, including at Newport, East Cowes Vics, Brading, Ryde Sports, Shanklin, Bembridge and Seaview.

His son, Duncan, is now involved at Seaview to carry on the family tradition.

Happily, after some of them spending time further afield, all the family chose to make their homes on the Island and Gerry was very close to them all.

A very hard working man all his life, his stamina, strength and determination frequently left the younger generation in awe of his ability to keep going.

Gerry was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2012 and in typical fashion he remained independent for several years and he was often seen walking for miles with his beloved dog, Pepsi.

More recently he became less able and had been cared for by what the family called 'amazing people' at Highfield House Care Home in Shanklin.

As well as his wife and three children, Gerry leaves seven grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

A celebration of Gerry’s life will be held at the Isle of Wight Crematorium on Tuesday, May 3, at 11.15 am.