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Clubs pitch in to remember Jack Savage
Buy this photo » Connor Chadwick for Wroughton and Jamie Pigeon for Croft
FAMILY and friends gathered at a special football match to pay tribute to a young man who died in a car accident.
Wroughton and Croft battled it out in Weir Field, Wroughton, yesterday for the Jack Savage Cup, a trophy in memory of the popular 20-year-old who died following a crash on the A419 in May.
After the match, friends and family continued to remember Jack at the Fox & Hounds, where they heard from band the Corsairs and local act Jimmy Moore.
Kev Cook, treasurer of the Wroughton side and who has known the Savage family for many years, organised the event.
He said: “With Jack’s passing, at the funeral I just felt a massive sense of hopelessness. And I just thought, is there anything that could be done to keep the memory of Jack?
“Jack was a Jack the Lad and he was well known in Wroughton and known by the girls too.
“I really enjoyed organising it and I’ve only delegated really. Everybody’s bent over backwards to help out. Ian Rolt, from Acorn Press, put the programmes together free of charge and I just want to say a big thanks really to everyone whose helped to bring it together.”
After the battle for the cup, football veterans took part in a friendly match between dads and friends who’d come along.
Among the players was Jack’s dad, Steve, who was moved by how many people had turned out to remember his son.
“Jack started playing for Croft when he was about five or six, and then he joined Wroughton when he was about 15,” he said.
“Lots of families here grew up with Jack, and I haven’t seen some of them for many years. But that’s how close they were with Jack.
“He was a really free spirit and he never spent any time at home except to check that everybody was okay. He was always in contact with his friends trying to find out where the best fun was. He was a really giving person.”
Mum Tanya said: “Jack was really passionate about football and he would have loved that both teams have come together.
“He was very much alive for the moment and that’s what we are trying to do for him.”
20-year-old Henry Finnegan was one of the players on the Wroughton side who knew Jack all his life.
He said: “We lived next door. I think it’s a good thing with getting all the lads together and stuff. It’s good to see them all together again. Jack was just a great guy and it’s just nice to see everybody here. He would have loved it, it’s a great way to remember him.”
It is hoped the match will become an annual fixture.
More than 300 friends and family filled out St Andrew’s Church, in Wanborough, for Jack’s funeral, where Steve read an emotional eulogy.
Yesterday he thanked everybody for their support during that time.
“We had over 500 cards and they were people writing really big pieces about Jack and the great times they had with him,” he said.
“We always wanted jack to have fun and be respectful and that just really gave us a bit of comfort.”
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