Mourners at Liam Treadwell's funeral told: Our lives were richer for him being here
Our lives were richer for Liam being here'. The words of the mother of Grand National-winning jockey Liam Treadwell at his funeral at Arundel Cathedral.
It was one of the heartfelt tributes paid to the 34-year-old, who was found dead at his home last month.
Liam was described as a gifted and popular sportsman as mourners remembered the life of 34-year-old who shot to national fame in 2009 when he won the Grand National on 100/1 chance Mon Mome.
Liam, born and raised in Arundel and educated at the Angmering School, rode 300-plus winners in a career lasting more than 15 years.
His parents Mark and Lorraine and brother Nathan were among those at the 80-minute service, which was streamed online via the cathedral website with many people prevented from attending because of restrictions on mass gatherings.
Liam's mother described him as a 'beautiful, kind and caring son - the love of my life' and said he 'smiled his way through the early years and made being his mother a pleasure'. Mourners heard that Liam, who had a bad fall during a race in 2016, had struggled with sleep and rest after concussion from falls, although had recently appeared to find new purpose in life.
A day of remembrance for friends, family and those in racing who knew him is set to be held after coronavirus restrictions ease.
Trainer who knew Liam well: We must not let his death be in vainA bouquet spelling out 'Liam' was at the foot of the altar during a service for which jockeys were among the pall bearers. Mourners were told he had excelled in football, cricket and cross-country running at school and was described as a 'dream student'.
He used to run extra laps alongside other pupils who were struggling in athletics, and was set for a career in football before choosing racing.
Canon David Parmiter, Dean of the Cathedral, said Liam was 'talented and much-loved' and added: "Liam was a gift to his family, friends and his sport. His death is the loss of so much potential."
Police are treating his death as unexplained but say there was no third-party involvement. The Shropshire coroner has yet to announce whether an inquest should be held.