Touching tributes paid as hundreds attend funeral of 15-year-old Sam Brown
THE family of a schoolboy who died after being knocked from his bike by a car have said goodbye to a "charming and caring young man".
Hundreds of people packed into St Stephen's Church in Newport for the funeral of 15-year-old Sam Brown yesterday.
He was killed earlier this month when he was hit by a car as he cycled along the B1230 Hull Road at Eastrington to his home in Gilberdyke.
After the service, Sam was buried in the church cemetery close to his grandfather Bruce, who died earlier this year.
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A minute's silence was held at Howden School and Technology College, where Sam was a pupil, when the funeral began at 10am.
The Reverend Graham Thornalley, who led the service, said: "Sam's loss has torn the heart from his family and friends at school and beyond.
"When someone dies so young and in such circumstances, it can bring emotions of anger, of hatred, of pain, but we need to leave those behind and remember Sam.
"He was a charmer and it was impossible to be cross at him for more than two minutes.
"He brought much laughter and much joy to all the communities he touched.
"But there was another side to Sam, which he kept hidden, which is that he was also a very caring young man."
School head Garry Garghan paid tribute to Sam during the service, saying his smile "lit up the school".
He said: "Like everyone who knew Sam, we are all pretty much in shock that we are not going to see him around school wearing that cheesy grin that was pretty much always on his face.
"Sam loved school. He didn't always like lessons, but he loved school.
"He was always talking to his friends, staff and other students with that big grin on his face.
"He lit up the place with his winning smile and wicked sense of humour.
"He possessed that rare gift of genuine charm. He was a happy-go-lucky, friendly person, an honest, nice lad.
"He could also be a modest, shy person, and didn't talk much about the things he was good at."
Mr Garghan told how Sam had recently undertaken a "superb" work experience placement at Howdens Joinery and last year won a place on a residential course at Askham Bryan College after a science and engineering day at the school.
"Sam led his group and he led them to win," said Mr Garghan.
"When I said how proud I was, he said, 'don't tell everyone, I don't want people to think I am a geek'.
"He was a lovely lad, who was just beginning to show flashes of his true potential."
Mr Garghan said the school has held cake sales and concerts since Sam's death to try to raise money for a permanent memorial at the school.
A collection was also taken after the service to go towards a memorial in Gilberdyke.
John Skurr, assistant head at the school and Sam's favourite teacher, said: "As a teacher, you come across many young people but Sam was unique. Over the four years I knew him, we developed a bizarre relationship and he would spend most of his lunchtimes dining with me.
"I think I have dined with Sam more than my wife. During that time, he would often ask if we were friends.
"I would say a sign of the friendship was that, even when he didn't have to, Sam kept coming to see me for lunch.
"He would often walk the site with me, asking if he could tell people off. He was particularly cheeky to the lunchtime supervisors, who all had a soft spot for him and that cheeky grin of his."
Mr Skurr said Sam would always give him handmade birthday and Christmas cards and would often play practical jokes.
He said: "Earlier this year, we discovered in an ICT lesson that Sam had an unusual hobby – collecting pictures of me. For a while, I have been receiving pictures of me underneath my door with a couple of kisses on them.
"We discussed the matter over lunch and he said he wanted to make me feel popular and special.
"Although I joke about Sam, he also showed a caring and sensitive side, often looking out for younger students. One of the tributes since this tragic accident came from a younger pupil, who said if they were being bullied, Sam would always help."
Sam had been cycling to his home in Gilberdyke after seeing friends in Howden when he was hit by a Audi A4. His friend Luke, who was also hit, was treated in hospital for broken bones.
The driver of the car, a 67-year-old woman, was later arrested and has been released on bail.
Humberside Police are continuing to appeal for witnesses to the accident, which happened outside the Rose and Crown pub at 8.50pm on September 6.
Anyone who saw them, or the accident, should call police on 101, quoting log 693 of September 6.