Friends of a rising teenage football star killed in a horror car crash have pledged to rally round to help his family after his tragic death.
“Popular” and “friendly” Ethan Hedley, aged 19, died on Friday night after the Vauxhall Corsa he was travelling in collided with a Ford Mondeo in Hatfield Lane, Armthorpe.
Distraught friends of the talented young footballer from Dunscroft have organised a tournament in his memory that will take place on Sunday at Thorne Colliery in Moorends from 1pm, with proceeds going towards paying funeral costs.
Dozens of floral tributes have been left at the scene including a moving message from his mother that read: “My world has fallen apart. You were my friend and my son. My heart’s in bits. Need you home but that’s not going to happen. Love you so much you’re always in my heart. Love you son, Mar xx.”
Friends of the Dunscroft teen, who was a student at Club Doncaster Sports College and playing for Buxton FC, have organised the tournament in his memory.
The event, organised by Kirk Frost, will feature a girls and boys tournament, stalls and raffles and takes place on Sunday at Thorne Colliery in Moorends from 1pm.
Natalie Wilkinson, aged 25, who will be playing on the day said: “Everyone had so much love for Ethan, he was so popular and everyone liked him, no one has a bad word to say about him.
“He loved football and used to play with a lot of the people taking part, so everyone thought it was the perfect way to remember Ethan and raise money towards the funeral. “Members of his family have said they have been really comforted to see how everyone has rallied round to organise the event.
“Everyone remembers Ethan as being a laugh and a bit of a joker
“It will be bittersweet on Sunday but I’m sure he’ll be there in spirit. Everyone is still in shock about what’s happened and keeps expecting him to walk through the door.”
Tony Tomlinson, Buxton FC club secretary, said: “Ethan certainly had something about him.
“He was a box-to-box midfielder and Tim Ryan, the assistant manager, was hopeful that with a full pre-season behind him he would go on to big things. It’s really tragic news.”
Ethan’s former school also paid tribute to Ethan.
Ash Hill Academy Principal, Dave Williams said: “Ethan was a very friendly and popular young man who was well-liked by his peers and staff. He attained BTECs in engineering, applied science, public services, sport and passes in four other subjects at GCSE.
“Ethan was a keen sportsman with a passion for football.
“Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time. Ethan will be sadly missed.”
The crash happened at around 9pm on Friday in Hatfield Lane, Armthorpe.
Two other passengers travelling in the Corsa were injured in the accident. An 18-year-old man was taken to hospital with serious injuries and a 19-year-old man suffered minor injuries.
The drivers of both cars were uninjured.
* The charity tournament takes place from 1pm at Thorne Colliery in Grange Road, Moorends, everyone is welcome and people wanting to play in the tournament can pay £5 on the day. The event will be followed by refreshments and a raffle draw at Willaspoons.
* Police are appealing for anyone who witnessed the crash to call 101.