East Cambridgeshire community supports fundraising for injured footballers raising nearly £70,000 in a fortnight
PUBLISHED: 12:12 14 July 2016 | UPDATED: 12:12 14 July 2016
A fortnight after a horrific crash saw a young footballer lose both his legs below the knee, £53,661 has been raised by generous members of public to help support his aftercare.
Shaun Whiter, 27, had gone to the aid of his friend, Soham Town Rangers player. Joey Abbs, 31, who had a flat tyre in Dullingham Road, Newmarket, at 10.55pm on July 1.
A silver Ford Focus then crashed into the pair before driving off. Shaun took the brunt of the impact, but Joey was also crushed and has a serious injury to his right leg.
Shaun is due to get married next year and one of the first things he is reported to have said the day after the hit-and-run was to tell his fiancée Charlotte Way that he would walk down the aisle at their wedding next July. Charlotte’s family and friends set up a fundraising page on Tuesday July 5. By that evening it had raised £7,000, but now the figure is more than £55,2911 – a third of the way towards the £120,000 target.
A second fund set up by Simon Masters for both men has raised more than double its original target - hitting £13,501 in just over a week.
There are various other Justgiving pages set up by friends who undertaking various challenges to rase cash including climbing Mount Snowdon.
Posting on his Justgiving page Simon said: “I wanted to say again I’m overwhelmed by the support you have all shown. I’m truly touched by your generosity from individuals that know Joey and Shaun personally, the football community and donations received from people just touched by their story!
“You are all truly remarkable! When I set this page up I was hoping to reach the goal of £5,000 but to see we have exceeded more than £10,000 now is remarkable and very humbling! Thank you all for your kind donations and words of encouragement and support for Joey and Shaun!”
The football community in East Anglia has rallied behind the cause, with Ipswich Town set to play a benefit friendly with Newmarket and Bury Town’s chairman Russell Ward urging teams in the area to donate 10 per cent of their takings from the first friendly of pre-season to the cause.
John Olive, Newmarket Town’s chairman, praised the amount raised. Joey recently moved from Newmarket to Soham Town Rangers and Shaun was due to sign on for Newmarket’s first team.
“I know I’m old-fashioned, but the amazing power of Twitter and Facebook, if it shows nothing else, has meant that this has gone viral,” he said
Visit http://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/Shaun-Whiter or https://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/s-masters to donate.
• A 40-year-old Haverhill man has denied causing serious injuries by dangerous driving after allegedly hitting two footballers in Newmarket.
Jan Adamec, of Shetland Road, was charged over the weekend by Cambridgeshire Police and appeared at Peterborough Magistrates’ Court on Monday morning.
He is charged with two counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving, Adamec denied both charges and has now been remanded in custody.
He will appear at Cambridge Crown Court on August 8.