A Huddersfield man who was fatally savaged by a dog worked at the heart of the local community as a lollipop man.
Known affectionately as ‘Jolly’, David Ellam was well-known for his role helping hundreds of children cross the road safely outside Paddock Juniors and Infants School.
Mr Ellam, 52, died after he was attacked by his neighbour’s Staffy-type dog as he tried to protect his Yorkshire terrier in Riddings Road on Monday morning.
A subsequent post mortem revealed he died as a result of multiple injuries.
The dog killed him remains in police kennels.
Since news broke that Mr Ellam had died hundreds of messages of condolence have been posted on social media.
Annmarie Barber said: “I only knew Dave a few months because he was the lollypop man for Paddock school. “He was just a lovely bubbly guy and I enjoyed our random chats. I can’t believe this has happened.
“Our thoughts are with friends and family at this awful time.”
Donna Senior also posted: “So sad. He was a great lolly pop man at my son’s school. He will be truly missed.”
Michael Andrew said: “Dave was a regular and stalwart of the Hudds Town Community walking football at the Zone. He had a good heart and was a friend to all down there we will miss him RIP mate.”
Mr Ellam, was also a huge Huddersfield Town fan and was instrumental in publicising the club’s Walking Football sessions, which encouraged others to get active in their community. He did not work at the Zone contrary to earlier reports.
Huddersfield Town Community Development Officer Rob Day said: “We’re all shocked to hear of Dave’s death.
“The group meet on a Tuesday morning and it wasn’t until an hour after the session that we learned it was Dave who had been killed in the dog attack in Huddersfield.
“He will be sorely missed.”
He added: “Dave was one of the first to sign up to our weekly walking football sessions four years ago and really enjoyed them.
“He also helped promote the group on Twitter.”
Police enquiries are continuing following the tragedy which happened at 9.45am on Monday when Mr Ellam was out with his own dog Rolo.
He was treated at the scene by paramedics and taken to Huddersfield Royal Infirmary but died later that evening.
Detective Chief Inspector Mark Swift of the Homicide and Major Enquiry Team said: “Mr Ellam died following multiple injuries sustained during the incident on Monday morning and our enquiries are continuing in to circumstances.
“We appreciate there will be understandable concern following this tragic event. There continues to be an increased visible policing presence in the area to offer reassurance to the community and I would urge anyone who has any concerns to speak to officers.”
Mr Ellam’s family have asked for privacy at this time but his cousin Kimberley Berry posted on Facebook thanking the public for their support at such a difficult time.
Ms Berry said: “Thank you everyone for your kind comments. He was a lovely guy and I’m honoured to call him my cousin. He will be sadly missed by anyone who met him and knew him.”
Anyone who has any information relating to police enquiries is asked to contact the Homicide and Major Enquiry Team via 101.