On the 16th February 1935 Rangers legend Tom Vallance died at the family home at 83 Pitt Street Glasgow aged 78.
Tom is buried in Hillfoot Cemetery in Bearsden and his funeral was attended by Mr. Struth, Chairman James Bowie and his old team-mate James McIntyre who both took a cord. Incredibly, players from the Vale of Leven team whom Tom had faced 60 years earlier in 1877 were also in attendance.
That will give you an indication as to how highly regarded Tom Vallance was.
Tom was paid the ultimate accolade by the Club in May 1898 when he was made a life member. In 2012 we had Tom put on to canvas by way of a painting by artist Helen Runciman which was unveiled at Ibrox Stadium at the end of our Founders Trail.
Tom Vallance took his rightful place at the top of the Marble Staircase alongside his friends and fellow Founders.
Some facts on Tom Vallance:
Tom had an incredible 60 year association with the Club.
He was a master oarsman, a champion athlete (he set a Scottish long jump record of over 21 feet), he studied at the Glasgow School of Art, had paintings accepted by the Royal Scottish Academy and was Rangers Club Captain and President for many years.
While President of the Club it was not uncommon to find Tom Vallance working the turnstiles on match day at First Ibrox.
We have recorded details of Tom Vallance being present at the ceremony held on 1st January 1929 which saw the opening of the Main Stand at Ibrox and also at a Dinner held in the old St.Enoch’s Hotel after a Rangers match in 1933, he was also a guest of the Club that year for the New Year’s day game against Celtic.
So, the lad who was present at Fleshers Haugh in 1872 was still attending Ibrox some 60 years later where the Club that he’d helped form and nurture were now playing in front of crowds touching 100,000.