Dad's tribute to 'caring' Daniel

A GRIEVING father spoke last night of the “best son anyone could ever hope for” after a 16-year-old cyclist was killed in a road accident.

Roddy Ashworth

A GRIEVING father spoke last night of the “best son anyone could ever hope for” after a 16-year-old cyclist was killed in a road accident.

Mark Andrew paid tribute to his son Daniel as scores of youngsters yesterday kept up an ongoing vigil near where the crash happened on Friday in Greenstead Road, Colchester.

Hundreds of tributes - some attached to flowers, some written in felt tip on road signs, and one on a skateboard that used to belong to the dead teenager - were displayed as part of a makeshift shrine in his memory on a piece of land between Greenstead Road and the A133 roundabout.

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Meanwhile around 40 friends and schoolmates consoled each other over the death of the popular boy, who had finished his last day at school just hours before the crash happened at around 7.15pm.

“Dan - can't believe you're gone. Always love you, from Emma and Becky” read one of the many cards accompanying the numerous floral bouquets.

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Another said: “Dan, you are going to be deeply missed. By everyone. You were like part of our family. Viv, Ben, Molly and Dylan.”

Daniel, who lived in nearby Goldfinch Close with his mother Mandy, had been riding his bike when it was involved in a collision with a silver Mazda saloon car.

He was declared dead at the scene of the crash. The driver of the Mazda, a 28-year-old local man, was taken to hospital suffering from minor injuries.

Last night Mr Andrew said that Daniel, who attended Sir Charles Lucas School in Colchester, had been planning to take up bricklaying and had been offered a place on a course at the Colchester Institute in September.

“It's hard to express how I feel. Everybody is so upset,” said Mr Andrew, who lives on Cowdray Avenue.

“I just really want to say he is going to be so missed by everyone. The amount of friends who have turned up here is overwhelming - it's a testament to the type of person he was.

“They have been here almost since it happened - they were here yesterday, then last night till the early hours of this morning and they were back again first thing. And they are still here now. He was such a popular boy.”

Mr Andrew said Daniel's younger brother Liam, aged eight, would particularly miss the teenager. “Dan was his idol. I don't know how Liam will cope,” he said.

“He was honestly the best son anyone could ever hope for. He was loving, caring, and he thought the world of his family and his mates.

“If anyone was ever in any trouble and he could help, he would be there - he was there for anyone,” Mr Andrew added.

Teenager Gary Wood said Daniel had been his best friend and bravely fought back tears as he asked for his tribute to be published.

“I would just like to say he was the best friend I could ever ask for, and I love him with every single bit of my heart,” he said.

“I would just love to spend one second more with him to see him smile. I love him so much.”

n A 28-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and released on police bail until July 2.

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