Prayers said for Guiting Power 'gentle giant' Jake Gardner
PRAYERS were said last night for a popular teenager who was described as a "gentle giant".
The community of Guiting Power came together to remember Jake Gardner.
The 19-year-old died in a collision on the B4077 near the crossroads to Bourton-on-the-Hill on Monday night.
Speaking before the service, churchwarden and former parish council chairman Mike Edwards said: "The service for the bereaved was already being held but now it will be particularly poignant.
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"Jake was a gentle giant and a lovely chap.
"He was a very big lad, about 6ft 6ins and his parents, Jenny and Simon are both tall.
"He played junior rugby at Cheltenham for two or three years but didn't follow it through.
"Farming was always his love and he was immersed in it." He added that Jake had gone to Hartpury College to follow his interests.
"We'll miss him greatly," he added.
He said that the small community was still upset after losing 30-year-old Rupert Greenhill to cancer last year.
"Now we've lost two young men," he said.
Jake completed his diploma in agriculture last year and had gone on to work for himself as an agricultural contractor.
His former Hartpury subject leader Janatha Stout paid tribute to the promising student.
She said: "Jake was a bright, lively and well-liked student. He was passionate about farming and excelled in a practical situation.
"He was keen to learn and had a very bright future ahead of him.
"All the staff at Hartpury have fond memories of Jake and our thoughts and condolences are with his family at this very sad time."
Jake's dad works for the village estate Guiting Manor Farms.
Manager Nick Bumford said: "Jake's parents are lovely people and his father is a very important member of the Guiting Manor Farm team.
"We send our condolences to the family and friends at this very difficult time."
The Reverend Canon Veronica James said: "With our service we'll be remembering the family. And we're keeping them in our thoughts and prayers in this season of Remembrance.
"It will be especially poignant this Sunday."
Police are still investigating the crash, which occurred at around 6.45pm.
Jake was driving a green Ford Fiesta when he was involved in a collision with a green Land Rover Freelander.
The other driver, a 59-year-old man believed to be from Cheltenham, suffered serious injuries and was taken to John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford where he last night remained in a non life-threatening condition.
The road, between Tewkesbury and Stow-on-the-Wold, was closed for eight hours.
Witnesses should contact police on 101 quoting 397 of November 5.