When an avid Cod Army fan contacted the club to say he was keeping track of his team while serving in Estonia, Fleetwood Town couldn’t wait to show their support by sending Simon a bundle of festive gifts.
Simon Mellor is a soldier in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers who is currently serving a 6-month operational tour in Estonia, and will be away from his family over Christmas.
He is part of the enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) which is key in NATO's alliance to deter potential aggressors from mounting military action in Eastern Europe. The tour promises to be long and hard, with minimal facilities and extreme cold weather temperatures approaching minus 30 degrees Celsius.
Simon is a regular attendee of Fleetwood Town matches with his son, so the club wanted to do all they could to help boost morale over the festive period while the troops are away from their families.
After Simon made contact with Dave Riche, General Manager of Fleetwood Town, last month, the club sent over a parcel containing gloves, hats, scarves, a football and pump, along with a personal message from the club’s Head Coach, Joey Barton, who wished him well over Christmas.
“I returned from the coldest exercise of my life to the welfare parcel from Fleetwood Town,” said Simon. “To say I am over the moon with it is an understatement. What a fantastic gesture from the club to take the time out to pack warm kit for my guys and a football, so now we can have a kick about in the gym.
“The USB stick was an absolute delight to receive, and the fact that the gaffer took the time to say merry Christmas means a great deal to me. My boy was massively jealous when I sent it to him, but it must’ve spurred him on as he managed to bag four goals at Poolfoot the same day!”
Andy Pilley, Chairman and owner of Fleetwood Town, said: “It’s amazing to hear how Simon is keeping in touch with the club from far afield, in extreme conditions, while protecting our country.
“Being away from your family at Christmas is tough, and even more so when you are doing the nature of work that Simon and his colleagues are involved in.
“As a club, we want to support him in any way we can, and by sending him some goodies and a message of support we hope we’ve helped boost morale for Simon and his section. When he returns from duty, there is also an honorary Onward Card waiting for him and his son!”
Fleetwood Town look forward to welcoming Simon back in March next year.