TRIBUTES have been paid to a humble and ‘conscientious’ hero of Troon’s lifeboat after he died from coronavirus.

James ‘Jimmy’ Manson MBE was an anchor for brave lifeboat crew members who would venture out to sea to save lives. He died at Biggart Hospital on Saturday, November 27, aged 90.

Jimmy was being treated at the Prestwick hospital for cancer and had spent the last 15 months of his life there.

His nephew Jim McGuffie, 76, was unable to visit him over the past three weeks due to lockdown restrictions.

But he says the family have been touched by the support shown to Jimmy with tributes led by Troon RNLI.

Jim told the Advertiser: “I can remember him from when I was seven or eight years old. He returned from the Royal Navy he moved in with my parents and we would play Ludo together. I can remember the score was 1,850 to Jimmy and 1,290 games to me, I used to always look forward to him coming home.

“He and his wife didn’t have any children so I was his next of kin.”

A hospital stay in Milport and eight years in the RAF were the only times Jimmy was seen away from Troon where his passion for the sea led to him setting up the town’s sailing club.

Jim added: “His house on North Shore Road looked right onto Arran and where the yachting was. He’d have his binoculars and always liked to watch the boats.”

Jimmy was the Honorary Secretary with Troon RNLI and would liaise with coastguard and man the station whilst the crew were out on a shout.

It was Jimmy’s involvement in supporting Troon’s lifeboat which earned him the highest praise as he received an MBE from the Queen in 2000 for services to maritime safety.

Jim said: “It was a proud moment for him, he had the photograph up in the living room of him and the Queen. He took my mum and dad – they were delighted about that. But it was a bittersweet moment for Jimmy who said it was the ‘best day and worst day’ of his life because his wife Dorothy had died earlier that year. They were married for 43 years.”

Former Troon RNLI lifeboat Coxswain Ian Johnson, Said: “Jimmy was a welcome face at the station when we were returned from service calls no matter the time of day and always had the kettle on for a hot brew.”

“I was sorry to hear of his passing as I have happy memories of our working together and his name will quite rightly be remembered in the history of Troon RNLI lifeboat station.”

Jim added: “The tributes from Troon lifeboat and the community have brought a lot of good memories back. He was a good guy.”