Watch as Sunderland pays tribute to Josie King one year on with balloon release

A huge crowd of friends and family gathered to release balloons into the sky on the one year anniversary of Josie King’s passing.

By faye.dixon
Sunday, 14 July, 2019, 13:43

Organised by Josie’s family, friends and family members huddled in a huge circle as they sent the balloons into the air at around 6.30pm on Friday, July 12 at a large field close to North Moor Lane, Sunderland.

The Thorney Close teen battled the bone cancer, Ewing’s sarcoma, and she spent the whole time fighting to help others facing the illness.

Balloons were released into the sky in memory of Josie.

She captured the hearts of many and continues to do so to this day.

This memorial follows many others that have taken place throughout the year including a plaque and bench which have been put up in her name and her brother Jack, 15, and her best friend Callum Nichols, 16, helped plant a yellow rose bush.

At what would have been Josie’s end of year prom, a place was set at a table for her with a candle lit in her memory.

Everyone was included in the tribute and the sky was filled with colour from the balloons with many showcasing written messages with people’s memories of Josie.

Crowds of family and friends gathered to release the balloons.

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Chantelle Richardson, 32, Josie's cousin was pleased to see so many people at the field. She said: “She’s always had the support that she’s had when she was here and when she’s gone.

“No one thinks she’s gone. She’s still with us all the way and as you can see on the field, there’s always hundreds of people that turn out.

“Even everything on Facebook that has been mentioned is so supportive and the people can’t get here are too.

“For Donna, Jess, Jack and John there’s always going to be people there no matter how far down the line we get.”

Many different kinds of balloons were released.

The memorial balloon release was arranged on the Facebook page ‘Boxer Josie King's fight against cancer’ which is run by Josie’s family.

Many of Josie’s loved ones also changed their profile picture to a collage created of her with a yellow banner to light up Facebook with the colour yellow.