No-one wants to immediately speak ill of the dead, but many tributes were tempered with a realistic look at the Labour leader's deficiencies.
As the Mirror pointed out
"He wasn't blessed with the imposing stature or suave manner of a natural leader".
Senior Labour figures - carefully unnamed - were quick to admit that:
"..his spell as party leader .. was not a happy one,"
He was always there on the frontline, beside the Labour Prime Minister, fighting - unsucessfully - to prevent the country from sliding into the recession and discontent that a Labour government always eventually brings.
He had some radical ideas for the economy: a big expansionary programme to lift Britain out of recession was his own idea, as was the idea that this had to be paid for by massive increases in borrowing. Not everyone agreed, but he was adamant.
He wasn't always best for his party either - indeed, there were many who believed that he made Labour almost completely unelectable.
Another Labour leader, Lord Kinnock, said - in his traditional windy manner - that..
"..the best that could be said of his leadership is that the outcome could have been even worse, the defeat bigger and the splits deeper."
Despite his burning ambition, he was never actually elected as Prime Minister. As Tony Benn said:
“I know he did not win the election, but the fact that he became leader ... puts him in the top list of figures in the history of the party.”
Yes, we may not have liked Gordon Brown but ... wait ... what? Who? So not...?
Oh shit. The wrong one..