Family pay tribute to 19-year-old Robbie Warner, of Stowupland, following sudden death at university

Robbie Warner

Robbie Warner - Credit: Archant

The father of a 19-year-old university student who died suddenly has described him as an “abundance of laughter”.

Robbie Warner from Stowupland, was found dead by his friends in Northampton on the evening of February 5.

Northants Police said there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death.

His father, Justin Warner, 42, said the first year drama and sports science student at the University of Northampton was a shy boy before growing up into a confident, determined teenager.

Mr Warner said once he and Robbie’s mum Ann-Marie Bell, 39, had boosted their son’s confidence, he wouldn’t stop talking.


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He added: “He was determined. Every time he was told he wasn’t going to achieve something he would prove people wrong.”

Robbie, born on April 21 1995, was a student at Stowupland Primary School, Bacton Middle School and Stowupland High School, before studying sports science for a year at West Suffolk College.

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Mr Warner said: “He was proud of himself when he got to uni and we were too.”

The popular 19-year-old, who played for Bacton United ‘89 from the age of ten, and was also a referee, was described by his father as an “abundance of laughter” and said they may never find out what was the cause of his death.

“We’re still going through the motions with his tests and postmortems,” said Mr Warner.

“Everything is coming in as inconclusive. It can take six to eight weeks. We’re in the dark like everyone else.

“Hopefully we’ll get some closure at some point. They have warned us we may never get a result

“We have lost a child and that hurts the most.”

Despite being a shy primary school pupil, he became a leader among his friends and in team sports.

Mr Warner said: “He played football at university, and no one would say a word apart from Robbie, who was always shouting.

“One of his drama lecturers said he loved his drama and he was a special part of the group.”

“I spoke to him on the Sunday before he died and he said he was going to do his masters and become a teacher, that was his goal.”

Mr Warner also said CEVA Technologies, where he works, have made a collection following Robbie’s death.

Robbie’s father managed him at Bacton, and occasionally played alongside him.

Mr Warner said: “We played Shotley once and he got cramp and I had to replace him. All the lads ribbed him for it.

“We did play in the same team a few times and I’ll always treasure that. Not many dads play football with their sons.

“Last Christmas we did so much together. I don’t know if it was fate but as a family we went out shopping and spent days together, something that we had never done before.”

Both Bacton and Stow Youth teams paid their respects to Robbie, by holding a minutes silence after they learned of his death, which Mr Warner said meant a lot, because it let the family know there are good people out there.

Mr Warner added Robbie thought the world of his family, especially his sister, 17-year-old Leah, and Cameron, who is also 17.

He said: “We always, as a family, brought him up to treat people in the right manner.

“I think he did that a lot by the way people have responded. We brought him up the best we could.

“From a family point of view we’re all so proud of what he achieved even though he didn’t get to finish it.

“The way he was as a person we wouldn’t have wanted anything more.

“We were blessed to have him in the few years we had him in our life.

“He’ll never leave our hearts, he’ll always be with us forever.”

The funeral for Robbie will take place on March 5 at the Ipswich Crematorium on Cemetery Lane at 11.45am.

Donation enquiries should be made to Andrew Bingham Independent Funeral Service on 01449 771666.

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