Scooter riders ‘keep the faith’ for friend Sally

Scooter procession sets off from Beetons Way
Scooter procession sets off from Beetons Way

Around 35 scooterists rode their Vespas and Lambrettas with pride this week in memory of their friend, Sally.

The scooterists from all across the region arrived for the funeral of Sally Hibbert, who died October 23, aged 51.

Kevin and Sally on an Easter egg and toy run earlier this year

Kevin and Sally on an Easter egg and toy run earlier this year

Sally and her husband, Kevin, who led the procession, had been keen scooterists since they met as teenagers in 1983.

They had taken part in scooter rallies across the county and made hundreds of friends who shared their passion.

Sally was diagnosed with a rare condition called Niemann Pic Type C in 1998, 
of which there are only around 500 known cases in the 
world.

The disease is caused by an accumulation of fats in the liver, brain and spleen. The age of onset and rate of disease progression can vary greatly from person to person.

Over the next 19 years, Sally was left unable to walk or eventually feed herself, with Kevin becoming her full-time carer.

In October 2016, Sally was also diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a double mastectomy, from which she had been given the all clear.

Her death from pneumonia earlier this came as a shock to all of her friends.

“We wanted to remember Sally the way she would have liked and so arranged the scooter procession in her memory,” said Kevin, from Bury St Edmunds.

“The scooters followed the hearse to Risby crematorium and then at the funeral we played her favourite song from the Northern Soul scene, Do I love You (Indeed I Do), by Frank Wilson.

“Sally was also a Liverpool Football Club fan so we of course played, You’ll Never Walk Alone.”

Kevin and Sally met at a Northern Soul party at Bury St Edmunds Rugby Club.

They were Mods originally, before becoming scooterists with a change of uniform to army greens and Fred Perry shirts.

They concentrated on family life after having three children – Lee, 27, Collette, 24, and Ashley, 18 – before rediscovering scootering again four years ago.

During her illness, Sally, a grandmother of two, was wheelchair bound and Kevin bought a specially adapted Vespa 125 with a sidecar to take part in rallies

“Sally was always fun-loving and outgoing and I will always have some happy memories riding round on scooters and going to Northern Souldoes,” added Kevin.

“She made friends very easily and many people got in touch to send their condolences and also ask if they could take part in the procession.”

Sally’s best friend, Nicola Murrow, from Bury St Edmunds, said: “Sally was an amazing person and very loved.

“We were best friends since we were 14 and did everything together.

“I can remember some great times in the 80s, all-nighters, all-dayers and lots of fun times in between.

“We were friends from age 14 and both shared a love of Northern Soul, and keeping the faith alive.”