Tributes to

TRIBUTES have been paid to the man who was named as the 10th victim of the Clutha pub helicopter tragedy.

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Joe Cusker became the 10th victim of the tragedy
Joe Cusker became the 10th victim of the tragedy

Colleagues of Joe Cusker spoke of a "dedicated, clever, kind man" who had volunteered his time with the local housing association for 10 years.

Mr Cusker, 59, originally from Rutherglen and who then lived in Cambuslang, died yesterday in Glasgow Royal Infirmary, where he had been receiving treatment since the tragedy on November 29.

Mr Cusker had served on the board of the Rutherglen and Cambuslang Housing Association.

Geraldine Baird, 63, who served beside him, said: "Joe was a lovely person. He volunteered his time and worked with the committee for 10 years.

"He used to work with South Lanarkshire Council's housing department and gave up his free time to volunteer.

"Joe helped make such a difference to Rutherglen and the community through his work. He was a dedicated, clever, kind man.

"I was shocked to hear Joe had passed away. It is devastating and it is such a great loss."

Mrs Baird added: "Joe recently retired from the council and had recently resigned from the committee. He had all his retirement to look forward to.

"It is unbelievable to think he went out for a drink and ended up this way. We are also regulars at the pub and know it is a small, tight community.

"It's heartbreaking to think Joe's life was taken in a split second.

"My thoughts are with his family. I can't say enough about how good a person Joe was. This really is the biggest loss. "

In a message posted on Twitter, Mr Cusker's stepson, David McClemont, said: "On behalf of my family I'd like to thank all the ICU staff at the Royal for the care and support they gave my stepdad".

First Minister Alex Salmond said: "I am sure everyone in Scotland will join with me in expressing our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Joe Cusker."

Tom Greatrex, MP for Rutherglen and Hamilton West, said: "I met Mr Cusker though his volunteer work with the housing association.

"He was a committed and hard-working member and was also very well known in the area for his work.

"It is a sad loss for the area and my thoughts are with his family and friends."

Neighbour Frank McAneney said Mr Cusker had moved from the are.a.

He said: "He was a quiet man. It's very sad news. I think he had moved in with his partner because we hadn't seen him here for a long time."

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said five people remained in hospital and were being treated for a range of injuries.

A spokeswoman said: "Two patients are receiving treatment at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, while a further three remain at the Queen Elizabeth Spinal Injuries Unit at the Southern General Hospital.

"The range of injuries being treated include bone fractures, spinal injuries, lacerations, chest injuries and head injuries."

angela.mcmanus@ heraldandtimes.co.uk

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