The family of a 12-year-old boy killed in a freak accident watching his brother play in a football match have paid tribute on social media. Olly Croker, from Tiverton, Devon, died on Monday, two days after the incident at an amateur match between Bradninch and Bampton on 12 September.
Eye-witnesses reported that two players were involved in a collision on or near the touchline where Olly was cheering on his brother. This sent a peg flying towards him.
"Two players crashed into the FA Respect banner that had been put up earlier that day for the youth football in the morning," said one witness. "Towards the end of the game in the afternoon, the players crashed into the fencing barrier which loosened the stakes and pegs before one went into the lad's head. It was horrific."
Olly was treated at the scene before being flown by air ambulance, first to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital then Bristol's Frenchay Hospital where he passed away on Monday (14 September). His death is being treated as a freak accident.
Olly attended Tiverton High School. In a statement the school said: "In describing Olly, the first words that come to mind are that he was the life and soul of the party; a larger than life character, brimming with confidence, with an eagerness and enthusiasm for taking part in all aspects of school life. His youthful vibrancy and curiosity about life shaped his whole character."
Olly had a twin brother Billy and an older brother Tom. On Facebook mum Pippa revealed Olly's organs had been passed on to five other children. She wrote: "We would very much like you all to feel so proud of Oliver this evening, through organ donation he has given life to five other children. He will live on in them. What lucky boys and girls they are!! Love you our beautiful gorgeous boy!!"