Memory of David Shrestha shines at poignant Royal School prize giving ceremony

Talented Dungannon pupil David Shrestha, who died over the weekend, has been remembered during a heartbreaking school prize giving ceremony at which he had been due to receive a major award.

Amid emotional scenes, David’s cousin Anna Gamble received his Sporting Achievement Award.

The 14-year-old, who had been selected for the Ulster U16 development squad, was praised by Principal Dr David Burnett as ‘a lovely young man’, who made a big impression on the school and on everyone who met him.

“He was an outstanding sportsman, especially in rugby and swimming, and as many of you know he had been selected for the Ulster U16 development squad this summer”, said Dr Burnett.

“But more important than all of that, he was an outstanding person. He was kind, considerate of others, fun to be with and driven by a sense of fair play and wanting to improve in whatever he was doing. He was the embodiment of our school motto, perseverando; he was the very best of us.”

The headmaster went on to praise the way pupils, staff and parents had grieved together and supported each other.

“I am very proud of you all. I want to take this opportunity to pay tribute also to Archdeacon Andrew Forster, our Chairman, our School Chaplain, the rector of St Anne’s, but most importantly our friend and comforter. Andrew, your leadership at this time has been uplifting and strengthened us all.”

Over the past few days, the school has begun the difficult task of making a return to normal routines.

Its weekend sports fixtures will begin again with a minute’s silence at all fixtures. The Medallion team will play their games this year with the No 12 shirt retired in honour and memory of David.

“As we begin our recovery from this heavy blow we will keep David in our thoughts and hearts. He is gone from us but he will not be forgotten”, said Dr Burnett.