Family pays tribute to ‘inspiring’ Martin

Martin Leonard SUS-151103-095526001
Martin Leonard SUS-151103-095526001

The family of the Catsfield cyclist who died after colliding with another rider have paid tribute to him.

Martin Leonard, 52, of Skinners Lane, Catsfield, was cycling with three other men in narrow Skinners Lane, close to his home shortly before 8pm on Sunday March 1 when he collided with one of the other cyclists and both men fell from their bikes.

He has touched so many lives in so many ways

The other cyclist, involved in the collision, a 43-year-old man from Catsfield, suffered a minor head injury.

Mr Leonard was flown to St George’s Hospital in London with head injuries, a fractured pelvis and spine and internal injuries but sadly died on March 3.

Martin’s wife, Nicola Leonard, speaking on behalf of the family, said: “We are so grateful for the overwhelming kindness and generosity of our friends, family and the people from the local community at this difficult time.

“Martin was a strong family man with strong family ties. He was a loving son, brother and the best dad ever. He was taken from us far too soon.

“He was happy, cheeky, spiritual, kind, thoughtful, imaginative, creative, generous, hard-working, friendly, sociable and funny - he always made people smile.

“Martin would always make time for a chat and would offer words of wisdom or lend a helping hand whenever he could.

“He has touched so many people’s lives in so many ways.

“Martin believed in recycling everything and that nothing should go to waste. He always felt he needed to give something back and gave to charities such as WaterAid and the RSPB.

“He did that in life but that has also continued in his passing. He wanted his organs donated after his death and so far he has saved the lives of six people because of that - and the list is growing.

“Martin has inspired us with his legacy. His presence is all around us, now and forever. We love you Martin.”

A police investigation into how the accident happened is continuing and police are still looking for anyone who saw the collision happen.

Anyone with information is asked to email collision.appeal@sussex.pnn.police.uk or call 101 quoting Operation Burgundy.

An inquest will take place at a future date to be determined by the Coroner.