Rugby match in honour of fallen war hero Jamie Kirkpatrick raises thousands for Llanelli war memorial fund
FUNDS for a war memorial in Llanelli have received a huge boost thanks to the friends and family of a fallen hero.
Army colleagues, family members and friends of Corporal Jamie Kirkpatrick once again went head to head in a charity rugby match at the weekend – putting their fitness to the test for the cause.
Jamie was killed in Afghanistan on June 27, 2010, and since his death thousands have been raised in his honour.
His dad Ian Kirkpatrick said the weekend, which raised in excess of £7,000 for the Llanelli Memorial Fund, started with a meet and greet party on Friday night.
"It served as an ideal opportunity for both playing sides to size up the opposition and to take note of the considerable playing history," he said.
"It sounded to me like both sides were ex British Lions as the evening wore on.
"It was however a real chance to catch up with Jamie's old friends, particularly the once who could not make last year's event."
He added that Saturday's rugby match was "extremely well supported" and another closely fought contest with a huge range of ages.
"Some local rugby legends made a special effort coming out of retirement, and the Army side had a few ringers, all contributing to very entertaining spectacle," he said. "The final whistle saw the Llanelli side once again victorious, meaning the KP Memorial Trophy remains in Llanelli for another year.
"Thanks from everyone for the guest appearance of Scarlet Deacon Manu who presented the trophy.
"Thanks also to The Llanelli Wanderers for the use of the pitch and facilities — particularly to Richard Keenan and Kevin Thomas for their very kind hospitality."
The event did not end there — with an evening raffle and auction boasting prizes from a British and Lions signed jersey and a boxing glove signed by Welsh champions, to beauty treatments and gym membership.
"The total amount raised by the auction on the evening was around £7,000, and the raffle raised £270," Mr Kirkpatrick said.
"Thank you very much to all the sponsors."
A cheque for £2,645 was presented to Colonel David Mathias, president of The Llanelli Memorial Fund, and honorary secretary Jon Kersting as the proceeds from a day of warrior themed events at Carver Barracks to commemorate the third anniversary of Jamie's death.
And with funds raised by Jamie's friends at a Question of Sport type quiz, the total reached around £15,000.
"We will hopefully be in a position shortly to determine the type of memorial along with a complete roll call of appropriate names," Mr Kirkpatrick said.
"We do however hope that anyone out there with detail of anyone else who is applicable, will contact us to make sure our detail is correct in every way.
"Once again a huge thank you to all the personnel involved both Army and civilian — especially to the ringleaders Jonny Matthews and Gareth Roberts from Llanelli, and Doc and Bev Docherty, Kris Jewitt and Paul Ward for the Army and afar."