Havering Sixth Form College pays tribute to Jodie Chesney's 'smiling, passionate, beautiful soul' with Purple Friday
PUBLISHED: 17:00 11 March 2019
Havering Sixth Form College students formed a "sea of purple" in memory of former pupil Jodie Chesney who was killed in Harold Hill.
Jodie, 17, was found suffering a stab wound in Amy’s Park, St Neot’s Road on Friday, March 1. She was pronounced dead the same evening.
Students at Havering Sixth Form College in Wingletye Lane, Hornchurch, wore Jodie’s favourite colour, purple, on Friday, March 8.
Paul Nutter, deputy principal at the college said the students were behind the plans for Purple Friday.
“The whole structure of the day came from the students,” said Mr Nutter.
“They didn’t want a minute’s silence and instead chose a round of applause. This was followed by Jodie’s favourite song, Riptide by Vance Joy.
“It was a positive experience in the sense that it recognised Jodie and how special she was.”
Jodie was studying A-Levels in psychology, sociology and photography at the college.
Members of staff have been working to ensure that appropriate support is in place for all those affected, and representatives from a number of services attended Purple Friday to ensure that this support continued.
Speaking in the Quad, Paul Wakeling, principal at the college, said: “Jodie would have liked this event, a sea of purple.
“Jodie loved doing things with her friends at school, at college, in the scouts or on the National Citizen Service. She loved making people laugh with her snapchats and stealing your food.
“Jodie must know that she will be in her friend’s and families’ hearts forever.
“To those that knew her Jodie was amazingly weird, the light of their lives and their group, smiling, passionate and never judging.
“She was a beautiful soul who loved dogs to bits, always cheering people up with her silly jokes and crazy personality.
“We are all going to miss her terribly.”
Residents have placed purple bows and ribbons on trees and lamposts as part of a show of solidarity against knife crime and in memory of Jodie.
A collection was taken on the day to contribute to the GoFundMe page which has been set-up to raise funds to assist Jodie’s family with funeral costs.