Fund for teen who 'touched hearts of all who knew him' tops £10,500
- Credit: Waveney FC/The Wright family
A fundraising page set up in memory of a popular teenager who died after a cycle crash with a van has raised more than £10,500 in less than 24 hours.
Ethan Wright, 16, died at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge on Thursday (November 18) after he had been involved in a collision with a white van on Higher Drive, just off an alleyway opposite the Woods Loke West junction in Lowestoft last Wednesday morning.
Dozens of flowers were left at the scene of the crash on Saturday from friends and family in tribute to the popular and "well respected" teenager from Lowestoft.
A GoFundMe page, entitled Memorial for Ethan Wright, was set up on Sunday - just hours after Suffolk police had confirmed his death on Saturday evening.
With the aim of reaching a goal of £4,000, the fundraiser was set up by the teen's football coach, Shaun Miller, to "help cover the costs of Ethan's memorial."
And showing the strength of feeling within the community for a much-loved, "kind and caring" teenager, in less than 24 hours a total of £10,563 had been raised as of Monday morning (November 22).
Mr Miller told this newspaper: "I am overwhelmed by the response."
In the space of a day, a remarkable 475 donations have been made - including a donation of £1,000 from Waveney FC, which was donated on behalf of players, parents and supporters and officials of the club following the "tragic loss of "a fabulous young man".
At the weekend the club honoured the popular teenager as a minute's applause was observed at matches across Lowestoft, East Suffolk and Norfolk.
A rose was poignantly placed on the centre circle prior to the start of one of the matches involving a Waveney FC team at Dip Farm, Lowestoft.
- 1 One person treated at scene of house fire in Lowestoft
- 2 Community rally together after fire rips through family home
- 3 'Boris needs to go' - Hotel manager's anger over alleged No 10 party
- 4 Pub transformed into 'breathtaking' family home for sale for almost £1m
- 5 Historic pub and restaurant to reopen after £150,000 investment
- 6 First case of Omicron confirmed in Suffolk with 16 more suspected
- 7 RAF veteran 'overwhelmed' after receiving 600 cards for 100th birthday
- 8 Fallen tree blocks train lines near Lowestoft
- 9 Have your say on new hospital for Great Yarmouth and Waveney
- 10 Lowestoft jeweller gets TV spot in Kirstie Allsopp's Handmade Christmas
Paying tribute to Ethan, Mr Miller said: "Ethan was a caring, funny, kind, intelligent young man who touched the hearts of all who knew him.
"I personally had the privilege to coach Ethan at Waveney FC.
"Ethan always played and trained with the biggest smile you could imagine, his happiness and joy for the game spread throughout the whole team.
"Please help me give Ethan the send off he deserves and show Ethan's parents how much he was loved by his family and friends.
"God Bless Ethan."
Having began his football career with Waveney in the 2011/12 season, Ethan played for the U7 Panthers and "demonstrated tremendous commitment and loyalty to the club" as he played more than 160 games throughout his youth football career, before progressing into the U17 and U18 teams this season.
Waveney FC chairman Mark Gamble thanked everyone for observing a minute's applause to remember Ethan, describing him as "a very happy, well liked and respected young person, who was always very cheerful with a smile on his face.
"He was a joy to be around," he added.
The 16-year-old - a former Benjamin Britten Academy of Music and Mathematics student - was also a popular paperboy who sometimes worked behind the shop counter at Rawmores on Village Rise, Lowestoft - the former Village Rise Newsagents store.
Paying tribute, a spokesman for Rawmores said: "We're very saddened to hear of the recent passing, of our former colleague Ethan Wright.
"Ethan was a very popular paperboy for several years with Village Rise Newsagents, working up until August.
"More recently he did some shop work behind the counter with us.
"The staff in the shop affectionately gave him the nickname of 'chops' as in 'cheeky chops', as Ethan always had a cheeky grin on his face.
"Our thoughts are with his family and friends, at this incredibly difficult time."
To donate to the fundraising GoFundMe page Memorial for Ethan Wright, visit here.