Hundreds gather to remember Hartlepool schoolboy Matthew Sherrington near spot where he was last seen
Hundreds of people gathered to remember 14-year-old Matthew Sherrington near the spot where the schoolboy was last seen.
They released biodegradable balloons and left flowers at Steetley Pier, in Hartlepool where Matthew was last seen playing in the water on Thursday, July 15, shortly after 6pm.
Matthew’s relatives, his friends and members of the emergency services were among those who attended the 4pm tribute on Sunday.
The public and emergency services were first of all thanked on behalf of Matthew’s family for their support since the Manor Academy pupil’s disappearance.
The balloons were then released with people watching from both the beach and surrounding cliffs.
While the force have yet to publicly confirm it is him, they have informed his loved ones of the discovery and are continuing to support them.
Other emergency services who joined the search for him have also shared words of kindness to his family.
Hartlepool RNLI said : “RNLI Hartlepool send their heartfelt condolences to Matthew's family and friends.
"The prime concern of the volunteers and staff involved was the safe and dignified recovery of the body to enable the family and friends to have some degree of closure and comfort.”
Hartlepool Coastguard Rescue Team added: “We at Hartlepool coastguard would like to send out our heart felt condolences to Matthew’s family and friends as they come to terms with the loss of a loved one.
"We can’t begin to imagine what you are feeling, may loving memories bring you peace, comfort, and strength.
“We are at a loss for words during this sorrowful time.”
Manor Academy said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with Matthew's family and friends at this tragic time.”
The online fund set up to pay towards Matthew’s funeral has already exceeded its £5,000 target.
A message on the page reads: “Matthew was a 14-year-old boy, with his whole life ahead of him.
"We’re absolutely distraught over our beautiful boy taken far too soon.
"We’re trying to help relieve the pressure of the funeral costs from his parents whilst they grieve and come to terms with Matthew been suddenly taken.”