Family of brothers who died in Cambridgeshire Fen tragedy left ‘overwhelmed’ by public support

THE FAMILY of two brothers who died after drowning in a Cambridgeshire Fen have said they have been “overwhelmed” by the public’s support.

Police divers recovered the bodies of Ashley Yardy, 22, and his half-brother Luke, 17, from Lake Mere at the Kingfishers Bridge Project near Wicken Fen in September.

Luke, a trainee gamekeeper, came into difficulties in a wooden boat while going to the aid of three injured geese.

When he saw his brother was in difficulty after falling into the water, Ashley, dived into help but also began to struggle amid the dense mud and reeds of the lake.

A frantic rescue operation was launched but the pair could not be saved. Police divers recovered the bodies of both brothers who are now buried side by side at Stretham Cemetry.

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Speaking for the first time since their funeral, mother Amanda Fountain and family members said they were filled with pride at how “well thought of” the duo were and thanked residents for their fundraising efforts.

The family statement said: “As a family we have been overwhelmed by the generosity of the community in respect of the memorial fund that was set up by the boys’ great friend, Luke Rhenius.

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“Thank you seems such a small thing to say to everyone but words cannot express how proud we are that the boys were so well thought of. Ashley and Luke will live on in our memories forever.”

The memorial fund has raised �1,465, which is set to be used to put a pair of memorial benches and two oak trees at Kingfisher Bridge and in Stretham, where the pair lived.

Mrs Fountain added some of the money would also go towards a trust fund for Ashley’s one-year-old son, Nathan.

The family also said: “We would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who was involved in the search at Kingfisher Bridge.

“Special thanks go to Rev Alan Hulme and Fullers Funeral Directors and to everyone who attended the funeral of the boys and for the cards and flowers received by the family.”

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