Romford teenagers raised thousands in memory of friend
- Credit: Harry Blue
An 18-year-old boy from Gidea Park organised an event that has raised thousands for charity in memory of a friend who took his own life.
The fundraising event saw 14 boys from The Campion School in Hornchurch take part in an outdoor obstacle course called Moody’s Mud Run to memorialise the year anniversary since their friend, John Moody, died by suicide.
Event organiser Harry Blue wanted to honour John and bring attention to mental health while raising awareness of suicide within younger generations.
Surpassing the goal of £500, the event raised a total of £4,016 in just over a month thanks to donations via GoFundMe from 168 people.
All money raised is in aid of YoungMinds charity, which was selected by John’s parents.
Harry said: “This fundraiser stemmed off of the unfortunate event of losing my friend and neighbour John, last year."
John, who was 18 years old at the time, passed away a week before the first lockdown.
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Harry added: “It was difficult to know what to do at the time due to Covid.
“Now it has been a year, I felt it was the right time to organise an event in memory of him and to help raise the awareness of mental health in young people.
“The event felt very personal as we all knew John and we wanted to work together in the memory of our friend while sharing the common goal of wanting to raise awareness of mental health in the memory of his name.”
John's parents, Alan and Bernie Moody, said: "We feel the fundraiser has helped remind young people that there is help out there if they need it, and it raised a large amount of money to enable YoungMinds to continue its work.
"We are so pleased that Harry and his friends from his days at Campion have taken time to cherish John's memory.
"John was such a funny wonderful person and their efforts mean that another family and friendship group will not have to deal with such devastating loss that suicide brings".
Expressing the importance of raising awareness, Harry added: “To anyone that reads this, I want them to know that if you donated, took part in the event, or helped to spread the word - I am so grateful that we have raised awareness.
“I want for people to know to be more cautious around their friends.”
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