Fun day in Alnmouth raises money to save lives in memory of Stephen Carey

A fun day has raised money to buy a defibrillator in the name of a footballer who died after collapsing during a game

The tug of war at the Alnmouth Fun Day
The tug of war at the Alnmouth Fun Day

A fun day has been held at a Northumberland football club which suffered the death of a player to raise money to prevent further loss of life locally.

Stephen Carey collapsed and subsequently died while playing for Alnmouth Football Club in 2012, as a result of a heart defect.

A fun day has now been held at the club to raise money for a fund set up in his name, which will use it to put a defibrillator in the village.

Stephen, 21, a Newcastle United fan from Alnmouth who worked at Iceland in Alnwick, was playing in a match at Warkworth that July when he collapsed. He was taken to hospital but doctors could not save him.

It later emerged that he had died as a result of a heart defect he had had since birth, which could have claimed his life at any time.

The Stephen Carey Fund was set up by a group led by Dougie McEwan, father of his friend Scott, and Sean Henderson, his manager at Alnmouth.

The tug of war at the Alnmouth Fun Day
The tug of war at the Alnmouth Fun Day

It was formed to raise money to give emergency first aid training to two officials at each club in the North Northumberland and the Morpeth Sunday leagues, with Stephen having represented Alnmouth in both.

The fund also sought to buy first-aid kits for each side and offer training to match-day officials.

People from Alnmouth and further afield, some of whom are connected to the football club, organised their second annual fun day in support of the fund at its home on Saturday.

There was a football tournament, tug of war, live music, funfair rides, a fancy dress competition, stalls and a beer tent.

Organiser Helena Allan-Brown said: “It was a really good day, I think everyone enjoyed themselves.”

Money raised from the day was to be used to buy a defibrillator for the village, in addition to that at Hipsburn First School which also covers the football club and a cricket club, bought with the proceeds of last year’s event.

Fund spokesman David Wilson said: “They have pretty much arranged everything at zero cost or as little cost as possible.

“That means the effort has to be a lot higher.

“They put a fantastic show on. The weather was great, it was busy throughout the day.

“It is just a local event that is getting stronger each year and it is just fantastic, a fantastic effort.”

The tug of war at the Alnmouth Fun Day
The tug of war at the Alnmouth Fun Day

In total, the fund has bought around 15 defibrillators for public and private use, including schools and golf clubs, and is in talks with other potential hosts.

A recent vintage rally at Rothbury will fund the purchase of even more.

Also read:

Vintage day in Rothbury raises money for lifesaving service

Rothbury gears up for Coquet Valley defibrillators fundraiser


David Whetstone
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Graeme Whitfield
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Mark Douglas
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