Help fund reach goal by playing in footy contest

Stephen Carey
Stephen Carey

A special football tournament will kick off later this year to raise money for a memorial fund, in honour of a soccer-mad 21-year-old who died playing the game he loved.

Talented Stephen Carey, from Alnmouth, collapsed on the pitch while he was representing his village side in July.

Attempts were made to save him at the match before paramedics arrived, but neither they nor doctors at Wansbeck could save him.

In tribute to Stephen – who was born with an unsuspected heart problem – and to try to prevent similar tragedies, a group of his friends have set up a namesake fund to provide emergency first-aid training and equipment to grass-roots football clubs.

The aim is to start with the North Northumberland League, in which the midfielder played, with the future goal of including all leagues in the county, at both senior and junior levels.

As part of the campaign, a fund-raising five-a-side football knockout tournament will be held on Sunday, March 17, at Alnwick’s Willowburn Sports and Leisure Centre, from 2pm to 7pm – and teams are being encouraged to sign up.

Entry for the tournament is £25 per team – with a maximum of seven registered players – and the winners will lift The Stephen Carey Shield.

Other prizes will include a medal for Player of the Tournament, as well as medals for those finishing in the top-four places.

The competition is open to those aged 16 and over. Teams will be accepted on a first-come basis and on payment of the entry fee. Cheques are to be made payable to The Stephen Carey Fund.

The tournament is just one of a number of fund-raisers being organised for the cause.

Dougie McEwan, who is on the fund committee, said there are a host of things in the pipeline and interest is growing in The Stephen Carey Fund all the time.

“We have got a lot of events planned and we have had massive support from a lot of people, especially from the football community,” he said.

On Saturday, February 23, Dougie and Scott McEwan, who was one of Stephen’s closest friends and fund chairman, will be taking to the pool table for a 24-hour marathon. It will start at 7pm at the Farriers Arms, Shilbottle.

Sponsorship forms are available at Leisure Look and MKM, both Alnwick, or from the Farriers, either beforehand or on the day. Or call Dougie (see below).

For fund details or to register an interest in taking part in the football tournament, call Dougie on 01665 575313 (after 6pm).

○ The Stephen Carey Fund could be the 2013 Jam Jar Army beneficiary. See Page 14.