Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Tributes Paid after Popular Bodybuilder's Sudden Death; Tragedy Comes Months after Daughter's Birth

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Tributes Paid after Popular Bodybuilder's Sudden Death; Tragedy Comes Months after Daughter's Birth

Article excerpt

Byline: CHRIS KNIGHT Reporter christopher.knight@reachplc.com @CM_Knight

HE was the popular bodybuilder who pursued physical perfection and adored his young family.

But now the grieving parents and friends of Ben Harnett have been left devastated by the dadof-one's sudden death at the age of just 37.

Bodybuilder Ben, from Choppington, Northumberland, was found dead in his home on February 2 by his devoted dad.

Tributes have poured in for the 37-year-old, who passed away just five months after the birth of his daughter Gracie.

Now, heartbroken parents Ben and Tish have emotionally opened up on the despair of losing their beloved son too soon. Tish said: "It's devastating. Our lives will never be the same again. Losing a child as parents is not the way it should be.

"There will never be another Ben. I'll never be the same without him."

Dad Ben added: "The grief is so hard. We've found it a lot easier being around family and friends."

Ben was raised in Choppington with his older sister Julie, and attended the village's nursery and infants' school and then Mowbray Primary School.

He helped out with the family's milk business by carrying out deliveries before lessons at Bedlington Station High - now Bedlington Academy.

After leaving school, Ben had a brief stint with the fusiliers before training to become a dump truck driver. He enjoyed several jobs around the North East before his latest position with Banks Mining.

But Ben's passion in life was working out at the gym and competing at bodybuilder contests. Tish, 62, said: "He loved doing it. It took dedication for him to prepare for each show. It was his release from working the long hours."

Dad Ben said: "Some people like having a drink. For Ben, he enjoyed the gym. It was his life."

Waking up at 5am, Ben would work 12-hour shifts before working out at the gym. …

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