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A tribute to Ray Gravell - 1951-2007

Diabetes UK has paid tribute to Welsh rugby legend Ray Gravell who died yesterday (31 October).

Ray had been diagnosed with diabetes seven years ago. In April this year he had his right leg amputated below the knee due to diabetic complications. Keen to educate others about his condition, he deliberately wore shorts for months after the operation in order to show how he was getting about on his artificial leg.

“As well as being a great sportsman, Ray Gravell was an inspiration to many people with diabetes," said Judi Rhys, Diabetes UK Cymru National Director.

"His death is a tremendous loss to thousands of people in Wales and around the world who appreciated his friendliness, his humour and his warm personality just as much as his achievements on the pitch.”

Born in Mynyddygarreg, Carmarthenshire, in 1951, Ray Gravell was one of the outstanding rugby players of his generation, and after retirement from the game pursued a successful acting and broadcasting career in both Welsh and English.

Under his bardic name of Ray o’r Mynydd – Ray from the Mountain – he performed an important ceremonial role in the National Eisteddfod of Wales, taking part in the annual Chairing of the Bard.

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