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Celebrities take part in charity football match in memory of Liam Ogunshakin
Duncombe Park captain Will Smith, left, and Emmerdale star Kelvin Fletcher ahead of the charity football match between Park and The Celebrities in memory of Liam Ogunshakin
PLAYERS and supporters of a North Yorkshire football team have held a celebrity match in memory of one of their much-loved friends.
Liam Ogunshakin, of York, was only 28 when he passed away in April after a battle with cancer.
His friends, who played alongside Liam for Duncombe Park FC, decided to host the fundraiser at Helmsley Sports & Social Club which has so far raised over £8,400 for Cancer Research UK.
They organised the match against “The Celebrities”, captained by Kelvin Fletcher, otherwise known as Andy Sugden from Emmerdale, and a team including stars from Waterloo Road and boyband Union J.
Crowds of people saw a 5-5 draw, with the home side then winning a penalty shoot-out 4-3.
Organiser Rachel Newton said: “It has been a very emotional day. It has been absolutely amazing, beyond belief. The turn out has been more than double what we expected.”
Liam was brought up in Ryedale following the death of his father before he was born.
His mother, Brenda, moved to the area with her older son, Dan, to be closer to her sister, Jean, and her husband Marco.
Sadly, Brenda and Jean were killed in a car accident in 1993, with Marco taking on the responsibility for the two brothers who were then aged eight and 12.
Liam had studied law at Sheffield Hallam University after leaving school and had then followed his brother to Australia and Thailand. He moved back to York where he was working for a student travel agency.
Marco said shortly before last Christmas Liam had gone to his doctor after suffering pain in his kidneys and passing blood in his urine.
“Liam was due to go out to Germany where his girlfriend was from but before he left he came to live here with us until he could have a scan at the hospital,” he said.
“While he was here, Liam was taken ill and taken to A&E where they found he had cancer which had spread throughout his body.”
Speaking after the weekend’s event, organiser Matt Petch said everyone involved was pleased to have raised such a considerable amount of money in Liam’s memory.
He thanked local businesses for their support and everyone who donated raffle prizes.
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