Grief turns to thanks for tragic family

Lifeboat crews who battled in vain to save a teenager who drowned off Hendon Beach have been given a special donation from his friends and family.

Mark Langton was swept to his death by a 15ft wave as he played with pals on the first day of the Easter holidays, two years ago today.

Since then a shop close to the 13-year-old's former home has been collecting donations for the RNLI.

His friends and family gathered at Roker lifeboat station on Monday to hand over a cheque for 500.

Crew members Ian Rowan and Ron Carroll were both onboard the station's D Class inshore lifeboat when it launched on April 10, 2006, to assist Mark.

Ian Rowan, helmsman at Sunderland RNLI, said "We're extremely grateful to the friends and family of Mark for deciding to mark the anniversary of this tragic accident by making this donation towards the running of our Lifeboat Station."

Paul Nicholson, senior helmsman at Sunderland said "We hope that this tragic event will act as a reminder to any youngsters who consider spending time at or near the coastline.

"It is especially important to take extra care when the sea is rough and the waves are breaking over the top of the promenades."