Family announce bigger venue to remember '˜beautiful' Michael Doda
The family of much-loved lad Michael Doda have changed the venue of his wake to allow more people to pay their last respects.
Michael Doda, 24, of Town End Farm, died suddenly while out walking with his beloved dog Simba on January 26.
His two-year-old American akita stayed by his side until help arrived after Michael was found in East Boldon by a passer-by.
Michael’s funeral - organised by Tony Clarke Funeral Directors - will be held on Thursday, February 9, at 11am at Sunderland Crematorium.
The service will be followed by a wake which will now be held at the Town End Farm Working Mens Club, on Bexhill Road, Sunderland.
His family said they decided to change to a bigger venue due to the volume of people who want to pay tribute to a lad, described by his mum Michelle, as ‘one in a million.’
Michael, who lived in Bognor Street, was a former student electrician at Hylton College and Port of Tyne driver.
He leaves four sisters - Naomi Doda, 37, Gemma Carr, 33, Natalie Doda, 32, Vanessa Doda, 27 - and girlfriend Emily Christie, 19.
He was also cousin to Sarah Mills, 35, and an uncle of four to Callum Burlinson, Ebony Carr, Elisse Carr and Autumn Ingram.
Paying tribute to her son earlier this week, Michelle said: “From day one he always brought joy to everyone.
“He was just a sweet boy, who was so respectful to everyone.
“He was always smiling - he was beautiful inside and out.
“He had a heart of gold and always wanted to take care of us all.”
A talented young man, Michael also had a passion for music and was known to sing songs he had written and also play guitar.
A video of his singing, which was uploaded by girlfriend Emily earlier this week, has now amassed 4,577 views, showing his popularity in the community.
To help cover for the cost of the funeral, a fundraising page has been set up, which has so far raised £2,275 of £3,000 goal.
The Town End Farm community has also held three fundraising events this week to raise further funds for the family.
To donate, visit: www.gofundme.com/raise-money-for-michael-funeral