There is almost 7 years difference between Jamie and myself.
I remember asking my Mum one day why I don’t have any Brothers or sisters, then a few weeks later she sat me on her knee and told me that I was going to have a younger Brother or Sister.
I found out the name of my Baby Brother at the end of school when my Dad picked me up. James Lloyd Gentleman, but we will be calling him Jamie.
March 20th 1995, one of the proudest happiest days of my life.
As we grew older together, we shared so much fun and happiness. A bond that is one of the strongest possible, the same blood, same upbringing, the same emotions and behaviours caught in a glimpse by those that knew us.
I regard memories as the most important part of my life. Take away my car, the roof over my head, my luxuries, my clothes even my food, but I will always have my memories.
J was such an amazing person, always happy always willing to stop doing anything to come and play, mess about and have some fun. Fun and enjoyment was his top priority, he put it before everything else, homework included! It’s almost as if his heart knew it had to make the most of every beat while he had the opportunity of today.
I used to love talking about J with my mates, the proudest Big Brother in the world, He was so good at football and I would tell everyone about his successes.
When he was 1 years old, he managed to kick one of my teeth out! Early signs and indications of that match winning right foot that would later score some breathtaking free-kicks and long range shots.
I ran as fast as I could when my Mum called me.
Pent up with anger and worry, thinking that someone had harmed my Brother, or led him astray. At no time though did I think the worst.
It wasn’t until I arrived at the hospital and entered the ‘relatives room’ that I started to think there could be a serious problem.
When Simon the man who came into the room to talk to us told us that “he had no easy way to say this” I felt my heart rip in 2.
March 15th 2009 the saddest and lowest point in my life.
However, despite all the pain, sadness and despair that I felt, this night was a turning point, a milestone, a hurdle in my life and others around.
They say your pains and struggles define who you are, I think this is true depending on how you deal with them.
We all had a decision, 2 roads to choose from, and we all chose to take the high road, the road of positivity, rebuilding and hope.
That’s what Jamie would have done.
Now today as I write this, I still feel the same pain, but its surrounded and re-assured by all of the inspiration, hope and love that is apparent all around me.
The people of Andover have been so supportive and the community has pulled together.
For me, The Jamie G sporting trust is Jamie’s way of living on and making a change. He was always encouraging others in sport and always showed immaculate sportsmanship.
He had raw talent and a kind heart.
The Jamie G sporting trust will operate in the essence of Jamie. His personality will be reflected in the choices and movements of the Trust, to continue to spread the positivity and enjoyment that radiated from my Brother.
Jamie is not lost. It is impossible to ever ‘lose’ anybody.
Jamie IS a talented, beautiful soul, and he lives on through the Jamie G sporting trust.
Jamie G’s Big Brother