Hundreds attend Dunbar crash victim’s funeral

David Armstrong's coffin is carried out of the church. Picture: SWNS

David Armstrong's coffin is carried out of the church. Picture: SWNS

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HUNDREDS of mourners gathered in the winter chill to say goodbye to the 15-year-old victim of a horror road crash which claimed the lives of three teenage friends.

With every pew full, dozens were forced to stand near the door of the Our Lady of the Waves church in Dunbar to listen to the emotional requiem mass for David Armstrong.

Flowers in the shape of a black and white football were among wreaths placed around the wooden coffin, which was carried out by pallbearers to the waiting hearse.

David’s distraught mother, Angela, had to be supported by the arm as she walked from the ceremony in front of his father, Davie.

Dunbar had witnessed emotional scenes the previous evening as 500 people – many of them David’s schoolmates – walked in slow, silent procession behind the coffin as it was carried the 300 metres from his nearby home to the church.

A number of hymns were sung during yesterday morning’s service, including Walk With Me, Make Me A Channel of Your Peace, How Great Thou Art and Do Not Be Afraid.

The funeral was the second to be held for the victims of the horror smash following the humanist ceremony for 18-year-old Jenna Barbour held at Dunbar’s Belhaven Church on Thursday, while 16-year-old Josh Stewart’s will take place at Stenhouse Parish Church on Monday.

The three friends died after the car they were travelling in struck a wall near Tyninghame, East Lothian on November 25.

Black-clad mourners filled the church yesterday for the service led by Canon John Creaner and Deacon Gordon Graham, with around 50 gathering outside in sub zero temperatures.

The order of service featured nearly 40 photographs of David taken throughout his life, one showing him dressed as Spider-Man as a child and another posing proudly in a full Celtic football strip. Images showed him as a newborn baby and many others surrounded by his friends or family.

A poem from his mother read: “My son, my child, my flesh and bones, has died and left me all alone, and in the night when no one sees, I cry and end up on my knees. David I love you more than words can say, as we told each other every day. Sleep tight my big handsome boy XXX.”

As mourners watched the coffin being lifted into the hearse, friends and family members wept in the street as a trio of police officers halted passing traffic.

In the wake of David’s death, his mother said in a written statement: “Our family is still in a state of complete shock following David’s death and we are struggling to come to terms with our loss.

“David was a kind-hearted and good-mannered boy, who was always respectful of adults and his peers and was a loving brother to his sister. He was athletic, enjoyed playing computer games and had a cheeky wink that made him such a wonderful person to know. We are grateful for all the kind words of support we’re receiving at this time and would like to thank our family and friends for their condolences.”