Friends vow to keep mem­ory of tragic 17 year old alive

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Edel Ke­nealy

Hun­dreds of bal­loons flew over the sun­set in Ruther­glen on Satur­day evening as a com­mu­nity tried to come to terms with the un­timely death of a teenage boy.

Jamie Pa­ter­son died fol­low­ing an epilep­tic seizure on Tues­day, April 19 at his aunt’s home in Burn­hill.

He was just 17 years old and had been di­ag­nosed with epilepsy four years ear­lier.

On Mon­day, one of his three clos­est friends, Josh Dun­can, told the Re­former: “I miss every­thing about him, he was a brother to me.”

Josh, to­gether with friends Kristo­pher Cochrane, 15, and Dean Chap­man, 18, were

by Jamie’s side when, aged 12, he lost both his par­ents in the space of four days.

They have vowed to stay by his side, hon­our and re­mem­ber him in the fu­ture — and in the com­ing days when he is laid to rest.

The trio are lead­ing a se­ries of events to re­mem­ber the foot­ball -lov­ing Rangers fan.

With the sup­port of the lo­cal com­mu­nity, the boys or­gan­ised a bal­loon and lan­tern re­lease at Burn­hill Sports Cen­tre on April 22, where hun­dreds of peo­ple gath­ered to pay their re­spects to a boy born and bred in the area.

“It was heart-warm­ing to see how many peo­ple cared about him,”Josh added.

“We will be hold­ing a foot­ball tour­na­ment to raise money for his fam­ily and as an act of re­mem­brance as well, we want to do him proud.

“If it was one of us, he would feel the same.

“I went from nurs­ery all the way through school with Jamie. The other day, I found a pic­ture I drew of him when I was in nurs­ery. When I was clean­ing my room, I found things of his; a hat and track­ies. Th­ese things make me re­mem­ber him. “I miss every­thing about him.” He added:“There wasn’t a bad word to say about Jamie, he got on with ev­ery­one. He was just a gen­uine boy.

“He had re­spect. He knew how to speak to his el­ders.”

Kris said:“When he was with his pals, he was a nor­mal boy. He could be loud and funny around us, but was shy with new peo­ple un­til he got used to them.

“I miss wak­ing up and hav­ing a mes­sage from him. You al­ways had one ev­ery day from him ask­ing how you are, what you’re up to.”

Dean said Jamie loved the com­pany of his friends, adding:“He would al­ways ask you to go into town, or the shop. He didn’t like be­ing in the house, he al­ways wanted to be out and about.”

An ac­tive lad, Jamie was a for­mer player for Ruther­glen Boys Club and at­tended Stonelaw High School up un­til last year. He was a sea­son-ticket holder for Rangers FC, at­tend­ing their games ev­ery week with­out fail.

The baby of the fam­ily, he was cared for by his five older broth­ers and sis­ter Mhairi MacVicar when his par­ents passed away.

Mhairi said:“The fam­ily would like to thank ev­ery­one for their con­tin­u­ous sup­port through this dif­fi­cult time. You all have been amaz­ing and we re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate your sup­port.

“The amount of peo­ple Jamie touched is count­less and it showed by the num­ber of peo­ple who turned up on Satur­day night to let off a bal­loon. I’m so proud of Jamie’s friends, they are just all amaz­ing.

“Our wee an­gel touched the hearts of so many peo­ple and will for­ever be re­mem­bered. You are sim­ply the best.”

Jamie’s fu­neral will be held at Linn Cre­ma­to­rium at 10am on Fri­day. Peo­ple are asked to wear the colours of Rangers Foot­ball Club in recog­ni­tion of the teenager’s love of the beau­ti­ful game.

Pals pay their re­spects Josh Dun­can, Kristo­pher Cochrane and Dean Chap­man have led tributes to their best friend Jamie Pa­ter­son (right)

Friends Kristo­pher Cochrane, Dean Chap­man and Josh Dun­can will host a foot­ball tour­na­ment in hon­our of Jamie

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