All Saints Church, on Victoria Square was packed to capacity today for the funeral of the well-known Penarth gymnast, actor and disability-campaigner Martin Vick.
Martin – who had Down’s Syndrome – passed away earlier this month after suffering a sudden stroke, but he had packed a great deal into an all-too-short life.
He was a determined and successful gymnast and, for 15 years, a leading comedy performer at the Hijinx Academy at Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff .
Martin also coached dozens of disabled athletes, travelled the world as a Special Olympian and was a tireless Learning Disability campaigner .
He was well-known and respected not only for his athletic achievements and stage performances, but also to thousands of customers of the Tesco supermarket in Penarth Marina where cheerfully packed shoppers’ groceries and tracked-down elusive items from the shelves for them
An enormous volume of personal tributes has been paid to Martin on social media – a testament to the affection in which he was held by many thousands of people in Penarth and in the wider community .
The congregation was moved to tears as Martin’s former colleagues in the Hijinx signing choir mimed to the Nat King Cole song “Smile” (cry while your heart is aching)” .
The service was conducted by the Reverend Canon Peter Cox and the interment was held in Penarth Cemetery.