UPDATE TUESDAY 11AM: Peterborough Utd star Grant McCann has added his voice to the growing number of tributes paid to a junior footballer who has tragically died, aged just nine.
Zack King suffered a severe asthma attack at his home in Deeping St James on September 2 and despite valiant efforts by doctors at two hospitals, eventually died on September 4.
McCann, also a Northern Ireland international midfielder, said on social media website Twitter: “I met this little boy (Zack) a year ago and now he is gone, so sad.”
Zack , a pupil at Market Deeping Community Primary School, was an under-10 footballer with Deeping Rangers who also represented his school as an athlete.
A statement on the Deeping Rangers website said: “Zack had been with the club since the age of five and was developing into a very prolific goalscorer, along with being a popular member of the teams he played in.
“He will be greatly missed by all those who knew him.”
Zack’s funeral takes place at St Peter’s Church, Maxey, Peterborough at 11am on Friday when the service will be led by priest-in-charge Rev Dr Hilary Geisow.
“I’d already had contact with Zack’s mum and sister prior to him being taken ill and we’ve had dealings with his grandparents who have close connections with Maxey,” Mrs Geisow said.
“It’s terrible what’s happened to Zack, even though I know he was an asthmatic from a very early age and he was having fairly regular treatment.
“Zack was at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, where the staff took extremely good care of him and I know his family are very that they did their best for Zack.”
A websote has been set up to raise funds for Asthma UK in memory of Zack and if you want to make a donation, go to https://www.justgiving.com/Zack-King
MONDAY 3PM: Family, friends and coaches are mourning the tragic passing of a young footballer described as a “bright young star” by his club.
Zack King (nine), a member of Deeping Clarets under-10s, died in hospital just two days after a severe asthma attack at his home in Deeping St James on September 2.
Tributes have come from Market Deeping Community Primary School, where Zack was a pupil, and Deeping Rangers Football Club ahead of the funeral at St Peter’s Church, Maxey, near Peterborough on Friday at 11am.
A statement on the club website said: “Zack King suffered a very severe asthma attack, whilst at home, and was rushed into hospital.
“Despite the very best medical attention, Zack sadly passed away on Thursday (September 4).
“All of our thoughts and prayers from the football club go out to Zack’s parents Alana and Damian, along with the management team, players and parents of the under-10s Clarets side.”
Zack joined Deeping Rangers as a five-year-old and, according to the statement, became “a popular member of the teams he played in”.
A statement from the school said: “Zack was a friendly, helpful boy who was conscientious and determined in his school work.
“As a friend, Zack was kind and caring which made him very popular among his peers.
“Zack was a talented athlete and footballer, representing the school at the Deeping Sports day and playing for both the school and Deeping Clarets under-10s.
“He will be missed enormously by everyone who knew him.”
A minute’s silence or applause was observed at a number of junior matches on Saturday in memory of Zack, as well as before Deeping Rangers’ first team’s game at Oadby Town.
Zack’s family is requesting for those attending Friday’s funeral to wear football shirts, rather than black ties.