Rare disease killed popular grandfather

Alan Ernest Shaw, 62, died of  Sarcoidosis inquest June 2011
Alan Ernest Shaw, 62, died of Sarcoidosis inquest June 2011

A DISEASE branded a ‘medical mystery’ killed a popular Kirk Hallam grandfather who didn’t even know he had the condition.

An inquest into the death of Alan Shaw, of Wirksworth Road, Kirk Hallam, heard that a post mortem found evidence of sarcoidosis, a disease that affects the immune system.

Dr Gerry Van Schalkwyk told Derby and South Derbyshire Coroner’s Court that there is no known cause for the condition that sees the body’s immune system carry on fighting when there is nothing to fight, eventually destroying the body’s organs.

Deputy Assistant Coroner, Paul McCandless, recorded an open verdict.

Alan’s wife of 36 years, Angela, and the couple’s daughter Caroline, were at the inquest.

Speaking afterwards they told the Advertiser: “He didn’t even know he had this condition.

“He knew something was wrong, we think he knew that something wasn’t right but he wasn’t an ill man.

“He was doing things as normal, going out, doing the shopping. We went camping eight weeks before he died and he was absolutely fine.

“It’s still such a shock.”

Alan’s family said they were frustrated at the open verdict as it left questions they still had unanswered.

Caroline said: “There’s still things we want to know the answers to but we know that won’t bring Dad back.

“He was a wonderful man, so clever with computers and cars.

“He was well known and popular, lots of people in Kirk Hallam knew him.”

Alan also leaves a son, John, and grandchildren Aiden, 11, and Jack, six.