Charity match 'would have made Liam Shepherd proud', says mum

More than a thousand people attend charity game for Weston boy who died in his sleep.

Kimberley attended the game, held at Weston's Optima Stadium in memory of her son, Liam. - Credit: Kimberley Shepherd

The mother of 11-year-old Liam Shepherd, who died in his sleep in March, has thanked all who took part in a charity football game and auction in memory of her son.

Kimberley, from Weston, was one of the 1,300 in attendance as AFC Weston welcomed fans back to the Optima Stadium for the first time in months.

The amount raised from the event will be announced later this week and then sent to the Liam Shepherd Foundation, which was created by Kimberley to support charities Liam had previously donated to, and the Winston's Wish charity.

Liam Shepherd's mum thanks Weston AFC for charity football match.

Money was collected for the Liam Shepherd Foundation. - Credit: Kimberley Shepherd

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Ms Shepherd told the Mercury: "All week, I was anxious about the game, scared about seeing so many people and knowing it was for Liam. 

"I would like to thank everyone who organised the game, came along, played and donated - they made my son proud and Liam would have loved the game and atmosphere while raising money for charity.

"I was very sad and angry at times when I was there as it made me realise Liam has truly gone and I could not handle it. My life will never be the same without my boy but I hope his legacy lives on forever."

On the day, two teams made up of Weston AFC players, where Liam played in the academy, as well as celebrities and professional footballers such as Eastenders' Jake Wood and former Arsenal academy player, Jamie O'Hara battled it out on the pitch.

The head of Weston AFC's foundation phase, Matthew Bazell also featured in the game and spoke with Mercury Sport, describing Liam as 'a selfless kid' who would always help others when he could.

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A memorial will be held for Liam at the Weston Rugby Football Club, in Sunnyside Road, on July 24. This will be attended by family and friends of Liam to celebrate his life and raise money for his foundation.