Family, friends and workmates will gather tomorrow to say a sad farewell to Neil Watson, who died when his motorcycle was involved in a collision with a bus.
The funeral service is being held at St Columba’s Church, Studfall Avenue, Corby, at 10am, followed by interment at Shire Lodge cemetery.
Afterwards, people who knew Neil, 23, are invited to join his family at the Irish Centre, Patrick Road, Corby, where there will be a celebration of his life.
His mum Ann Cruse said: “Everyone is welcome to join us. We want to celebrate the life that Neil had.”
The fatal accident happened in Gretton Brook Road, at the junction of Phoenix Parkway, on Wednesday, October 3, as Neil was on his way to work at a Corby call centre.
His devastated family have been comforting each other, helped by support from friends and neighbours who have sent hundreds of cards and messages of goodwill and floral tributes.
Neil’s mum said: “We are a very close family and we are all keeping each other strong.
“Neil was such a lovable person and had so many friends. He was always laughing and was a bit of a practical joker.
“He could always make people laugh. He loved his family and his friends. He loved his motorbike and had lots of other interests.
“Neil enjoyed fishing, golf and scuba diving and he supported the Steelmen.
“We loved him and we will miss him terribly.
“The support we have had from everyone has been overwhelming and really comforting. It’s helping us get through this. The police have been so good and we would like to thank them, and everyone else, for their kindness and generosity.”
Neil, a former pupil of Lodge Park School, Corby, lived with his girlfriend Alex at his sister Angela’s house in Shetland Way. The couple were planning to set up their own home together.
Mrs Cruse said: “Alex is bearing up and she knows that she will always be a part of our family.”
Neil was fiercely patriotic and the theme of tomorrow’s funeral will be red, white and blue, with the coffin draped in the Union Flag and carried in a a motorcycle hearse.
As well as his mum Ann and sister Angela, 29, Neil leaves his dad Danny and brothers John, 27, and Andrew, 20.