Jamie Fortune family and friends distraught at memorial thefts in Taunton

Jamie's friends Abbie Mather and Francesca Drew with his brother Matthew Fortune.

Jamie Fortune.

First published in News

FAMILY and friends preparing for the anniversary of a teenager’s death are distraught after sentimental items were removed from a roadside memorial.

Photos and other mementoes of motorcyclist Jamie Fortune, 18, have been taken from Kingston Road, Taunton, where he died following a collision with a car on July 1 last year.

His grieving father, John, says it is not the first time the public site around a tree has been targeted but he has no idea who is responsible.

“It’s upsetting for all Jamie’s family and friends,” said Mr Fortune.

“These people are a bit sick in the head to take things from a memorial.

“It’s despicable and cowardly. If someone had said they disapproved, we could have spoken to them, but nobody’s said anything to us.”

Other items removed included a friend’s crash helmet, candles, a Pingu doll “with a lot of connection to Jamie”, cogs from his bike, a scarf and flowers.

“It’s not the first time something like this has happened,” said Mr Fortune.

“Last year a woman was seen taking all the flowers away in a bin liner, even the artificial ones.

“Now someone has come along and taken everything – we’ve no idea when or why.”

Family and friends have been back to the site and planted some flowers and replaced the candles.

“Even now someone’s been up there and trampled on some of the flowers and taken a £30 candle holder within 24 hours,” said Mr Fortune.

“It’s so distasteful. It doesn’t make sense.

“Jamie was very popular and this has upset a lot of people. Many people have been going there regularly to remember him.

“If someone knows who did this, we’d like them to come forward.”

Jamie’s friend Francesca Drew said: “It’s really upsetting. We don’t have a clue who’s doing this.”

Spokesmen at Somerset County and Taunton Deane Councils said neither authority had removed the items.

Comments (6)

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10:30pm Wed 25 Jun 14

adam6gd says...

The photo seen here was taken on tuesday the 24th, by today, wednesday the 25th everything has been taken again. I cant believe anyone could be so disrespectful as to take everything that is only a memorial for my best friend. Ive been going around asking neighbours today and they don't mind it being there at all.
The photo seen here was taken on tuesday the 24th, by today, wednesday the 25th everything has been taken again. I cant believe anyone could be so disrespectful as to take everything that is only a memorial for my best friend. Ive been going around asking neighbours today and they don't mind it being there at all. adam6gd
  • Score: 14

7:35am Thu 26 Jun 14

hannahwhite28 says...

That first comment is spineless and heartless! Who are you to tell anyone how long they should grieve for?? This is awful and downright disrespectful. People need to be helping with finding whoevers doing this. I for one will keep my ears open. So sorry for what keeps happening and hope you resolve it and keep strong.
That first comment is spineless and heartless! Who are you to tell anyone how long they should grieve for?? This is awful and downright disrespectful. People need to be helping with finding whoevers doing this. I for one will keep my ears open. So sorry for what keeps happening and hope you resolve it and keep strong. hannahwhite28
  • Score: 8

10:52am Thu 26 Jun 14

jjjjjj/mmmmm says...

Of course we all deal with grief I. Different ways. I am entitled to an opinion and it doesn't lessen my respect fir yiur grief. However, personally for me grief is a private emotion and is easier to cope with.
Of course we all deal with grief I. Different ways. I am entitled to an opinion and it doesn't lessen my respect fir yiur grief. However, personally for me grief is a private emotion and is easier to cope with. jjjjjj/mmmmm
  • Score: 5

11:08am Thu 26 Jun 14

Thurza says...

If having this roadside memorial is helping the Family then it is a good thing, we all mourn in different ways, it is good to grieve and then you can hopefully eventually move on, but the loss of a child is the worst thing to ever have to bear and if this helps them to take just a little of the pain away then it should be respected and left alone.
If having this roadside memorial is helping the Family then it is a good thing, we all mourn in different ways, it is good to grieve and then you can hopefully eventually move on, but the loss of a child is the worst thing to ever have to bear and if this helps them to take just a little of the pain away then it should be respected and left alone. Thurza
  • Score: 8

1:27pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Mi_Coc says...

The one for the girl who died by scat has gone.

I think they should ask the council if they can put proper memorial, maybe a bench with his name on it.

The kind of thing being left could be being moved by neighbours who find it unsightly. Or it could be being taken by local youths who thimnk they are clever.
The one for the girl who died by scat has gone. I think they should ask the council if they can put proper memorial, maybe a bench with his name on it. The kind of thing being left could be being moved by neighbours who find it unsightly. Or it could be being taken by local youths who thimnk they are clever. Mi_Coc
  • Score: 1

8:42am Sat 5 Jul 14

TauntonBloke29 says...

Yes, some people are sick in the head and have no respect. The main is that Jamie will be looking down on all of what you have done an appreciate how much so many people care. All you have done is amazing so take pride in that and leave those sad people for the karma that awaits them.
Yes, some people are sick in the head and have no respect. The main is that Jamie will be looking down on all of what you have done an appreciate how much so many people care. All you have done is amazing so take pride in that and leave those sad people for the karma that awaits them. TauntonBloke29
  • Score: 0

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