A HUGE turnout is expected at a firefighters’ charity car wash on Saturday for Kyrece Francis, organised by his former football coach to raise money for the fund set up in his memory.
Full time firefighter Neil Curry coached the teenager at Downley Dynamos for the past three years and said his tragic death in the River Thames last week has rocked the whole community.
And along with his colleagues at Beaconsfield Fire Station, Mr Curry will roll up his sleeves and get his hands dirty to support the fund launched by the 13-year-old's friends for safety equipment along the river.
He said: “I coached Kyrece for the past three years, and he was a wonderful lad and did such a great job playing as a right back. He was so fast, like Usain Bolt.
“It’s is such a massive shame, we will all miss him dearly, so I set this up for the cause as it’s so close to my heart.
“I’ve got a feeling it’s going to be a busy day. We are trying to get the whole football team along, and we will get them all working!”
The Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue team worked alongside specialist police search crews during the four hour sweep of the River Thames near Marlow last Tuesday after Kyrece got into difficulties while playing with friends.
And firefighters say their involvement in the teenager’s tragic death has made them even more determined to raise funds to prevent future accidents with the installation of life jackets, buoys and awareness signs along the Thames Path.
Bucks Fire and Rescue Spokesman Fraser Pearson said: “Everyone has been so moved by this tragedy, especially Neil as both his coach and a firefighter.
“Obviously, like his friends, family and the whole community, we are devastated and being involved in the rescue makes it all the more poignant."
Along with his Downley teammates, Kyrece’s friends and family are expected to attend to raise as much as possible for the fund set up in his memory.
The car wash is scheduled to run from 10am until 2pm at Beaconsfield Fire Station, Skelton Close, Holtspur.
To donate, visit www.justgiving.com/yimby/KF22/