Family honours Glenn who was 'always smiling' and 'lived for music'

Glen 'Glenny boy' Saffer has died

Glen 'Glenny boy' Saffer has died - Credit: Saffer family

Tributes have been paid to Glenn 'Glenny' Saffer, a man who spent his life surrounded by loving family and friends. 

Glenn was born in 2001 at the Jenny Lind hospital but following complications was diagnosed with cerebral palsy, epilepsy and was also blind. 

However he, and his family alongside him, rose to the challenge to ensure that Glenn was never without a sibling, parent, or grandparent close by. 

His mum Joanne and father Glen said he was "always smiling". 


Glenn with his parents pictured outside their home in Jamieson Place - Credit: Archant

Joanne said: "You couldn't have met a happier little boy. He was always smiling. 

"Growing up in those early years we would often take him to the Hamlet Centre and to the charity Scope. There was also a sensory room at the University of East Anglia which he just loved. 

"Anyone that took him - whether it was me or his nan or his siblings - it would bring a tear to our eyes because of how magical it was for him."

Glenn Saffer with ihis mum Joanne and dad Glen after receiving his new wheelchair from the east coas

Glenn as a child with his parents after receiving a new wheelchair - Credit: Archant

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Glenn - affectionately nicknamed 'Glenny boy' - spent the first years of his life living in Jamieson Place before moving to Gipsy Close in Norwich. 

He attended the Clare School from the age of four to 19 and was a well-known face in the city. 

Joanne said: "When we were in Gipsy Close we used to have a lovely bench and awning out the front. We lived next door to Glenn's best friend Clayton and we were always sat out there chatting to the neighbours passing by."

And the thing which never failed to make Glenn smile was music. 

Evening News Christmas lights competition. FRONT Glenn Saffer (5) pictured with his Sisters Stacey (

Glenn pictured at a Christmas lights event - Credit: Evening News © 2006

Joanne said: "You could always hear him coming because he had bells on his wrists. They always made him smile.

"When he would go to see his consultants at the hospital they'd say they could hear him coming down the corridor."

His father is a well-known boxing coach and Glenn was often spotted beside the ring. 

Glenn Saffer

Glenn Saffer - Credit: The Saffer Family

"His dad would play music and the whacking of gloves on the punching bags used to make him laugh," Joanne said. 

"He always wanted to be out and supporting his dad."

She added: "He loved the theatre for the music - he lived for music. We would always take him to shows and the likes of Thursford Christmas Spectacular and the Winter Wonderland at Lavenham. 

Glenn Saffer, 18, is disabled and has been refused tickets twice to Vue cinema. Glen his father Glen

Glenn pictured with his Dad and carers at the age of 18 - Credit: Archant

"At Christmas the Lion's Club - which is a charity - would come to our house on December 19. They'd dress up at Father Christmas and sit with Glenn - I've really missed that this year."

Glenn was the youngest of five siblings - born after siblings Bradley, Leanne, Danny and Clare. 

The group were a "tight-knit bunch", Joanne said. 

Their mum, who now lives with her family in Style Loke, near Barford, added: "They were always arguing over who got to go somewhere with Glenn. If they couldn't decide they'd all go. 

"Glenn had eight carers but one of them was his sister Leanne. She was with him pretty much full-time. We always wanted one of us to be around for him.

"We knew our time with him was precious so we wanted to make sure all of his memories were happy and were with us."

The family often went abroad on holiday to the likes of Spain and Mallorca. 

Joanne added: "One thing I always remember was him getting stuck in a lift at the airport. His sisters and an air hostess were in there with him for about 40 minutes. 

"I was so worried but he was so happy to be with his sisters. It's something we look back on and laugh now, him being up there like a king.

"He also had such a special bond with his nanny, my mum Christine. He absolutely adored her - out of everyone he always had so much love for her."

Glenn died on December 14. 

His funeral will be held at Earlham Crematorium at 12.30pm on January 12. 

Flowers can be sent to Harvey's Funeral Home in the Norwich Road by 8.30am of that day. 

Donations, if desired, can be sent to the Clare School courtesy of Harvey's Funeral Home.