Irving Crawford was among a scrum of photographers jostling to get pictures of the United team after the Whites European Fairs Cup final victory in Budapest in 1968.
Don Revie came out of the dressing room, recognised Mr Crawford in a crowd of journalists and said only he could come in to the dressing room to take photographs.
Mr Crawford's widow Audrey, 87, recalled the Budapest story as she paid tribute to her husband after his death aged 87 at St Gemma's Hospice on December 23.
Mr Crawford, who was a keen golfer, had been suffering from prostate cancer.
Mr Crawford was 14-years-old when he started work as a junior in the photography department at the old Yorkshire Evening News on Trinity Street in Leeds in 1946.
He worked in the dark room alongside a young Peter O'Toole for more than three years.
Mr Crawford became friends with the man who went on to become a screen legend and who starred in 1962 film Lawrence of Arabia.
Mr Crawford became a press photographer and started working for the Yorkshire Evening Post in 1959.
He was promoted to chief photographer in 1965 and photographic manager of Yorkshire Post Newspapers in 1971.
Mr Crawford underwent heart by-pass surgery in 1986 and took early retirement in 1987.
He met his wife Audrey at Middleton Park Golf in 1952 when he was 20 and she was 19 and they married in 1955.
Audrey Crawford said the couple's third great grandchild, Fiona Crawford, was born on Thursday December 19, four days before he died.
She said Mr Crawford saw photographs of Fiona while he was at St Gemma's Hospice.
Mrs Crawford said: " He was absolutely thrilled. He was even more thrilled when he found out his grandson had taken the pictures on an SLR camera instead of using a mobile phone."
Paying tribute to her husband, Mrs Crawford said: "He was kind and he was a gentleman."
Mr Crawford's youngest son Gary, 57, said: "He was a gentle giant and he was my hero. I will miss him dearly."
Mr Crawford was actively involved for many years with the Adel War Memorial Association.
He was a former chairman of Adel Tennis Club, where he and his wife and he coached juniors for many years.
He was also a founder chairman and honorary life Member of Adel Squash Club.
Mr Crawford and fellow Headingley Golf Club member Colin Handley ran a successful golf tournament at the club and raised thousands of pounds for local heart charities.
Mr Crawford also leaves son Timothy, 59, and four grandchildren.