Friends’ campaign to honour memory of “lovely” teenager Ally
PUBLISHED: 09:34 07 October 2015 | UPDATED: 10:10 07 October 2015
Schoolfriends of teenager Alistair Calvert have paid tribute to him and launched a fundraising and awareness campaign in his memory.
Schoolfriends of teenager Alistair Calvert have launched a fundraising campaign in his memory and paid tribute to their beloved friend after his death from a sudden heart attack.
Alistair, from Sidcup, known as Ally, collapsed and died on July 26 at the age of 18.
A post-mortem examination revealed he had suffered a cardiac arrest, and that a heart condition had caused his heart to become twice its normal size.
His friends and family have since raised almost £8,000 for the charity Cardiac Risk in the Young, calling their campaign Ally’s Big Heart.
His friend James Shaw said: “Ally was a rare type of person who could light up whatever room he was in.
“He would make you laugh when you wanted to cry. He was the glue to hold so many friends together. He also loved spending time with his family as much as he did with his friends.
“He was an avid QPR fan, regularly attending matches with his mum and sister. His family supported Ally in everything he did, whether it be playing for the local team and cheering in the rain, or his apprenticeship with Vinci, where he was an apprentice electrical engineer for two years.
“Ally was a young man with everything to live for. We all miss him very much and always will.”
Teacher Jonathan Luck, who was Ally’s head of year at Cleeve Park School, described him as “a lovely young man with a heart of gold, a real pleasure to teach.”
James and fellow schoolfriend Alfie Staples have already taken part in the British Heart Foundation’s London to Brighton Bike Ride in aid of CRY.
Pupils and ex-pupils also held a cake sale and a wear-red-and-white day at the school in Bexley Lane on September 25, raising £181.
“We have sold wristbands to always have a part of him with us and have more plans,” James added.
“We also are trying to increase awareness – 12 young people a week die from an undiagnosed heart condition like Ally’s.”
Headteacher Jenni Tyler-Maher said: “We have heart-warmingly fond memories of Ally at school and this is able to continue through the events our students have organised in his memory.
“We are very proud of their passion and drive to positively remember Ally and to raise awareness of cardiac risks in young people.”
To donate or for more information visit www.justgiving.com/Allysbigheart.
BLOB: The Met Police, who initially put out a statement saying they thought Ally’s death was linked to laughing gas, were subsequently forced to apologise to his family.