A FIT young sportsman fell victim to a killer "super bug".
Manraj Singh Hayre, 25, died within hours of being admitted to hospital, despite a desperate battle to save him.
Now his family, from Bradley, have spoken out about their anguish.
And they have said thanks for the many tributes paid to their son.
One of the most poignant came from the GNG Khalsa soccer team, who dedicated their victory in a local cup final to the former player.
A special shirt bearing his name was made for the final. Mr Singh died in the intensive care unit at Leeds General Infirmary only hours after being admitted.
It is thought a virulent strain of meningococcal meningitis was to blame.
About 600 people attended his funeral yesterday at Elland's Park Wood Crematorium.
His father, Mr Jasbinder Singh, said: "It was such a shock.
"Manraj was a very fit and healthy lad, and always had been. He loved sport when he was at Fartown High School and began playing football there.
"He moved to play open-age football when he was 16 and played for Sikh Leisure and for GNG Khalsa.
"He was a very happy-go-lucky lad, who enjoyed a party and everyone liked him.
"It is such a big loss for us and for so many people in Huddersfield. I don't known how we are going to cope."
He said his son first complained of headaches about three weeks ago and was prescribed tablets by his doctor.
The headaches persisted and he went to the Royal Infirmary on April 13 when tests were made.
The symptoms eased and he returned home but on Easter Saturday he was again admitted to the Infirmary.
More tests were made and even though his condition improved, he was sent to Leeds General Infirmary on Easter Monday for a scan.
Mr Singh said: "He was sitting up in bed, eating ice-cream and chatting away to us when we were with him and everything seemed okay.
"There was no reason to think he was not going to recover.
"But on Monday night we were called back at 9.30pm and told he had been taken into the intensive care unit.
"He had been sedated and the doctors hoped that would allow the drugs to start to work, but at 10am on Tuesday they told us his brain was dead. At 1pm we agreed to turn off the machine.
"It was just one of those terrible, rare things. The doctors said that normally the symptoms would spread out over several days, giving them time to treat a patient. This time, it happened in hours."
Manraj, who married in June 2004, worked for a finance services firm in Huddersfield.
Mr Amarjit Gossal, a spokesman for the GNG Khalsa team, said: "We all decided to dedicate the game and our victory to Manraj.
"No-one expected this tragedy to happen, especially so quickly.
"He had played with us in the past and was a great guy."
Meningitis the facts:
* Meningitis and septicaemia can kill in hours.
* Meningitis is the inflammation of the lining around the brain and spinal cord.
* Septicaemia is the blood poisoning form of the disease.
* The two forms of the disease have different symptoms. People who recover from meningitis and septicaemia may be left with a range of after-effects that dramatically alter their lives.
* Meningitis is usually bacterial or viral and occasionally is due to fungal infections, although almost any microbe can cause it.
* Viral meningitis can be very unpleasant, but it is almost never life-threatening and most people quickly make a full recovery.
* Bacterial meningitis is more serious and can be caused by a range of different bacteria, although most cases in the UK and Ireland are caused by meningococcal bacteria.
* Meningococcal bacteria can cause meningitis or septicaemia or both. Most people who get the disease have some symptoms of both meningococcal meningitis and meningococcal septicaemia; together they are known as meningococcal disease.