RESIDENTS of Compton have said they are in ‘shock and mourning’ after the sudden death of a pub barman and former village postmaster and shopkeeper.
Russell Gordon-Smith, 48, was found dead at his home in Hambrook last weekend from an apparent heart attack after a barbecue and drinks with a few friends.
He was found by his father and sister who were concerned he had failed to turn up at previously arranged appointment at the Goodwood vintage sports car breakfast club event.
As news of his death spread around the village, residents gathered in the Coach and Horses pub where he worked consoling themselves and then tearfully raising glasses in a joint toast to his memory.
Landlord David Butler said: “People just came in unable to believe what had happened. He was such a lovely guy who would do anything for anybody. There wasn’t even a clue he was ill.”
For some years Russell ran the village shop and post office. Although he later encountered financial problems residents stood by him.