Headteacher pays tribute to tragic Tom

THE headteacher of a school which is mourning the loss of a talented 18-year-old student has paid tribute to the “cheerful and positive” teenager.

THE headteacher of a school which is mourning the loss of a talented 18-year-old student has paid tribute to the “cheerful and positive” teenager.

Tom Marshall's life was tragically cut short when his motorcycle collided with a car in Orford on Friday evening.

The 18-year-old lived in Orford and attended Farlingaye High School.

This afternoon, Farlingaye head Sue Hargadon said the news had left staff and pupils stunned.

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She said: “He was one of those lovely characters who lifted your day when you met him because he was always so cheerful and positive.

“He was unfailingly polite, always asking people how they were. He worked incredibly hard and was determined in his aim to get to university.

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“All his current teaching staff have commented on how hard he was working for his A levels - he was one of those students you loved to teach as he was interested, contributed well to lessons, was unfailingly cheerful, took advice, met all deadlines and worked at the highest standard he could.

“Tom was taking A levels in Biology, Geography, PE and General Studies and had taken Chemistry at AS level.

“He was going to Bangor University to read Marine Biology and Oceanography and we are absolutely confident he would have achieved the grades to go there.

“This career choice reflected what seems to have been a natural and long standing interest in the sea and water.

“He's spent time at a marine nature reserve in the South of France, enjoyed snorkelling, kayaking and sailing and worked as a life guard at Leiston Swimming Pool.

“He really enjoyed listening to a wide range of different types of music and would regularly send his friends clips from You Tube. “He kept himself very fit, despite having a passion for “Freddos”! He worked out regularly, and enjoyed playing rugby. He was keen to support and help others and did this in a very unobtrusive way.

“He helped in Biology with our Adopt a Teacher scheme and had helped at a local youth club. He played in our Farlingaye Brass when he was younger.

“He worked with his family to raise money for orphans and the needy in Mozambique. The great passion in his life appears to have been his bike. He'd saved up for his current bike and was very proud of it

“Our whole school community has been stunned by this news. We have spent time today talking to each year group about what has happened and letting those who need it have time to think, reflect and talk.

“Tom will be greatly missed by the staff and students. Our school community is a sadder place without him.”

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