A DEVOTED Oxford United fan received a yellow and blue send-off as friends and family held a funeral themed around his football club.

John ‘Tony’ Pattison, a supporter of almost 70 years, died aged 88 on July 10 – three days before his beloved team played Wycombe Wanderers in the Sky Bet League One play-off final at Wembley.

Mourners wore club colours to his funeral at Oxford Crematorium today, while the order of service was made to look like a matchday programme and the Abingdon resident even had a bespoke U’s coffin.

This had been personally wrapped by John’s son Ian Pattison, who works for Oxford-based company Colourful Coffins.

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A United fan himself, he explained it was a fitting tribute to his dad.

Ian said: “The idea came to us on the day he passed. We were sat around the house and wanted to do something for him.

“It was a common thing for all of us – it’s got to be Oxford. That’s what defined him for 70 years.

“We started brainstorming and came up with the yellow and blue theme.”

Born in Headington, Mr Pattison was in the RAF during his National Service and stationed at RAF Hemswell, even appearing as an extra in 1955 movie The Dam Busters.

An electronics engineer at AERE Harwell, he started watching the U’s during their Southern League days in the 1950s – when they were still called Headington United.

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He witnessed many of the club’s finest moments in the decades that followed, including the Milk Cup final victory over Queens Park Rangers in 1986.

The loyal fan first took Ian to The Manor Ground in Headington in 1976 and the pair would watch from the Beech Road terrace for many years, alongside John’s wife Gillian and grandson Laurence.

He even celebrated his 85th birthday on the Kassam Stadium pitch at half-time of United’s EFL Cup defeat to Brighton & Hove Albion in August 2016.

Mr Pattison’s final match was the U’s last home game before the coronavirus lockdown, a 2-1 triumph over Southend United on February 29.

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He and his wife had just renewed their season tickets, but he died just two days after their 59th wedding anniversary, leaving Gillian, Ian and eldest child Angela.

Ian texted BBC Oxford ahead of the play-off final and a tribute was read out before the match.

The service was book-ended by the Dam Busters theme and the 2016 re-recording of Oxford United’s My Oh My Wembley anthem, followed by a minute’s applause.

Ian said: “Dad could see the club was on the cusp of something again.

“If there were no restrictions we’d have got a line of fans up and down the driveway to cheer him on.”