Community grieves as probe continues into deaths of four teenagers in crash

Community grieves as probe continues into deaths of four teenagers in crash

A community in Shropshire is grieving as an investigation continues into a car crash that left four teenagers dead.

The bodies of Jevon Hirst, Harvey Owen, Wilf Fitchett and Hugo Morris were recovered from a silver Ford Fiesta in Snowdonia, North Wales, on Tuesday.

A search was launched for the teenagers after they failed to return home from an overnight camping trip to the Snowdonia area.

North Wales Police said the bodies were found inside the overturned car which left the A4085 at Garreg, near Tremadog, and was partially submerged in water.

Jevon Hirst, Harvey Owen, Wilf Henderson and Hugo Morris
Jevon Hirst, Harvey Owen, Wilf Fitchett and Hugo Morris (North Wales Police/PA)

Shrewsbury Colleges Group, where the boys were A-level students, offered “deepest condolences to the family and friends” of the teenagers and said it had put in place a range of support measures to help those affected.

Trinity Churches said it would offer “time and space to pray” at the Trinity Centre in Meole Brace from 9am on Wednesday, while Shrewsbury Abbey is open all day for prayer and reflection.

Superintendent Owain Llewellyn said: “Police officers attended and located a Ford Fiesta vehicle on its roof, partially submerged in water.

“Tragically, the bodies of four young males were recovered from within the vehicle.

“The families of the missing boys have been informed.

“At present, this appears to have been a tragic accident, and our thoughts are with the family and friends of the four young men at this very difficult time.”

Inquiries into why the car left the road are under way, the force said.

Crystal Owen, Harvey’s mother, said she did not know the teenagers were going on a camping trip and thought they were going to stay at a friend’s grandfather’s house.

She said she was taking time away from the cupcake business she runs and leaving it in the hands of her partner and staff.

(PA Graphic)
(PA Graphic)

“I feel like I’m in a nightmare I wish I could wake up from but I’m not,” she said.

“I just wanted to say I do appreciate people’s kindness but no amount of messages is going to help me overcome this. Nothing will make this nightmare go away.”

Maddi Corfield posted a tribute online in the wake of the tragic loss of her boyfriend, Wilf.

“I love you so much, I’m going to miss you forever,” she said.

“The sweetest and most loving boy I’ve ever known. I hope you know how much I love you, gorgeous. Thank you for all the time you’ve spent with me… thank you for loving me endlessly. I promise I’ll do the same for you, my sweet, sweet angel.”

She added: “I can’t imagine my world without you. I’m missing you so much already, but I am going to enjoy life the way you would’ve wanted, the way that you made me feel.”

Her mother, Lisa Corfield, 37, said on Facebook: “I am absolutely heartbroken for Maddi and all of the families involved. Wilf was such a lovely, kind lad and treated Maddi in a way only a mother could hope her daughter be treated.”

Staff at the Dough and Oil restaurant paid tribute to their colleague, Harvey.

In a post of Instagram, they described him as “easy-going, warm, funny, gentle, bright, hardworking and humble”.

They said he had joined two years ago starting on the pot wash, then working front of house, before switching to the kitchen.

“He gave it his all, developing a passion for dough and had dreams of one day opening his own bakery,” they said.

“Before shifts, or on his break, you’d often find him listening to music or his head in a book – unusually for his age enjoying the likes of The Doors and Jack Kerouac, always keen to chat and discover something new.

“Our love, thoughts and condolences go out to Harvey’s family and to those of his friends, their lives full of promise cut so tragically short.”

Shrewsbury Town Council has cancelled its Christmas lights switch-on planned for Wednesday evening following the tragedy.

“Our thoughts go out to all who are caught up in this terrible tragedy,” they said.

Daniel Kawczynski, Conservative MP for Shrewsbury and Atcham, said: “On behalf of all constituents in Shrewsbury and surrounding villages, I would like to extend my deepest condolences and sympathy to the families and friends who have been tragically affected by this terrible loss of life.

“Yesterday evening I received messages of condolences from friends across the political spectrum in the House of Commons.

“The whole country were desperately hoping Jevon, Harvey, Wilf, and Hugo would be found safe and well and this news is devastating.

“I would like to thank the emergency services and local mountain rescue teams, as well as members of the public for their assistance in helping with the search.

“This news is truly heartbreaking, and my thoughts go out to all those affected by this tragic news.”

Liz Saville Roberts, MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, and local Senedd member Mabon ap Gwynfor said in a joint statement: “This news is truly heartbreaking and foremost as parents ourselves our thoughts go out to the families and friends of the four young men whose lives have been lost in this tragic accident.

“We would like to pay tribute to the emergency services and local mountain rescue teams involved in the search operation and to members of the public for their assistance in helping to locate the vehicle.

“No words can sufficiently reflect the sorrow that this news brings to our whole community.”

First Minister of Wales Mark Drakeford said it was “devastating news” to hear of the boys’ deaths.

“My thoughts are with their family and friends during this incredibly difficult time as they deal with the unimaginable,” he added in a post on social media site X, formerly known as Twitter.