Stephen Darby spent much of his early career in the Liverpool Academy, eventually graduating to the first team. While the local product moved on to spend the majority of his senior career in the lower tiers of the English leagues, he’s still remembered and beloved by the local community. Unfortunately, Darby had to retire in 2018 after being diagnosed with motor neurone disease.
Darby went on to co-found the Darby Rimmer MND Foundation to raise funds for research and aid for those stricken with the disease, as well as to raise awareness. The LFC community have jumped in to raise funds for the foundation. Liverpool and one of Darby’s other former clubs, Brentford, played a preseason match as part of a charity fundraiser. In addition, Liverpool’s Academy players and staff organized and participated in a walk to raise funds for the foundation. The walk raised over £4,100 for the foundation.
The Academy recently hosted Darby to present the check to him and his foundation. The former Liverpool man took some time to catch up with the Academy staff from his playing days to express his gratitude.
“To have the support from the Academy is overwhelming. What the staff and the Academy lads did in raising money and awareness was fantastic and we can’t thank them enough,” said Darby.
“The money raised will go to families who have someone diagnosed with MND, whether they need equipment or house adaptations or carers, and towards research. We’re making positive strides and hopefully we can find a treatment and a cure sooner rather than later.”
Darby also spoke about how influential his time was at the Academy.
“It’s a place which has a special place in my heart and I’ve got great memories of being here. I spent my whole youth career here, from eight or nine years old, and it’s great to be back to see Neil and see some of the staff who were here when I was here. You can tell there’s a really positive vibe in the place.”
Here at TLO towers, we want to wish Stephen Darby all the best, and hope for a breakthrough in MND research soon. If you’d like to donate to the Darby Rimmer MND Foundation, you can do so here: https://www.justgiving.com/darbyrimmer-mnd.