DEWSBURY CELTIC youngster Ben Restall has died aged just 17, following a battle with bone cancer.
Ben, who played prop, was diagnosed with the illness in March this year and as news spread of the Celtic player’s condition, a flurry of fundraising events were planned and hosted, including one by St Helens player Alex Walmsley, who also played for Celtic as a junior.
Ben’s father David, who described his son as ‘happy go lucky’, said: “We would like to thank everyone who has offered their help and support to Ben and our family as a whole.
“Especially Dewsbury Celtic, but also the charity Friends In Deed who have been great providing Ben with what he needed, making his life this year as comfortable and as enjoyable as possible.
“They also hosted a dance fundraising event which we really appreciated, their efforts helped pay for Ben a new shower room on the first floor which was much more accessible for him.
“Ben was a great boy and we will miss him so much, but it is a special feeling to know Ben was loved by so many others as well.”
Ben attended St John Fisher High School and had just started sixth form there, studying A-Levels as he continued to pursue his dream of becoming a pilot.
“The school have been great with Ben during this difficult year and he liked it there and he made some very close friends along the way who are all very upset at the news,” said David.
Ben’s funeral will take place on Tuesday December 22 at St Paulinus RC Church, and everyone is welcome to attend and celebrate Ben’s life.
Dress code for men is a white shirt with green tie in honour of Ben’s Dewsbury Celtic connections.
The Restall family have requested that donations be made to Friends In Deed.
A tray will be placed at the back of the church, alternatively donations can be given to committee members or be left behind the bar at the Dewsbury Irish Nash marked ‘In Memory of Ben Restall’.