Blackpool-born Carlisle United manager pays heartfelt tribute to Jordan Banks
Carlisle United's Blackpool-born manager Chris Beech has penned an emotional tribute to Jordan Banks.
The nine-year-old tragically passed away on Tuesday after being struck by lightning while he took part in football training.
A feeling of profound loss has swept over the resort, and in particular its grassroots football community.
The devastating incident occurred on Common Edge playing fields, where Beech - who later grew up in Fleetwood - often played football as a youngster.
"The football family comes together this week to show solidarity, compassion and support to the family and friends of Jordan Banks the number 7 for Clifton Bees U9’s, who tragically lost his life on Tuesday evening," Beech said.
"I was born in Blackpool and grew up in Fleetwood and I was a 9-year-old myself playing football on Common Edge playing fields.
"I have friends and family that live there and I can’t begin to express how sad this is.
"From myself, my family, everyone associated with Carlisle United and the whole of Cumbria, we stand United to offer our deepest condolences to the family, friends and team mates of such a wonderful little boy.
"The football community has come together across the country over the last 24 hours by posting nine football emojis in support and respect, it would be great if we could give it our backing.
"Fly high Jordan, you’re forever in the hearts and minds of everyone."
Thousands of pounds were raised in a matter of hours by well-wishers yesterday, #RIPLittleMan was trending on Twitter while nine footballs have been widely shared in his memory on Twitter and Facebook.
Scores of tributes – including flowers, football shirts, cards, and balls were left on the grass where he was struck.
Meanwhile, the Tower was lit up red in the colours of Jordan’s beloved Liverpool FC.
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