Fundraiser launches in memory of ‘universally loved’ Storrington dad, 39, who died suddenly
A fundraiser has been set up in memory of a Storrington father who died suddenly aged just 39.
Colleague and friend Damian Sheridan has paid tribute to Gareth Croker who passed away on October 15 after a medical episode.
Damian, 45, launched a fundraiser in Gareth’s memory, which has already raised more than £12,000 to go towards his children’s future.
He said: “Gareth tragically passed away suddenly, and leaves behind his wife Vicky, and his two wonderful boys, Oliver and William, aged just 4 and 6.
“Gareth was much loved, both in his professional life and amongst his huge circle of friends. Since his passing, it has been clear to see the positive impact he had on so many lives.
“The amount of grief people feel is tangible and that is only a testament to Gareth, and the guy that he was.”
Gareth was a founding member of Stolz Kitchens and worked as Commercial Director alongside Sales Director Damian.
He said: “Gareth was always willing to help, to go the extra mile, to make a personal sacrifice to aid others. Nothing was ever too big an ask for him.
“He was the best of us. We will miss him enormously.
“His wife and kids were his world. Everything he did, everything he achieved was for them. His desk is littered with photos of the four of them, the holidays they shared, his kids going to school on their first day, his screensaver a constant reminder of the reason he did what he did, and what he was striving for.
“Nothing can replace the loss that Vicky and the boys will feel, the times with Gareth that they won’t get to have, so all we can do is to try and take some of the burden away.
“Any donation, no matter how small, will be appreciated and will go to the boys’ future.”
Gareth grew up in Storrington and went to Steyning Grammar School from 1994 to 1998.
He had been living in Angmering and moved back to Storrington with his family shortly before he died.
Just four weeks ago Gareth was Damian’s best man at his wedding.
Damian said: “It was so quick. When it comes out the blue it really comes out the blue. It’s absolutely devastating.
“It’s rare to meet anyone who is universally liked. Gareth wasn’t, he was universally loved. He lit up every room, his smile constant.
“His work ethic was immense and he delivered results over and over again. I’ve never met anyone so frustratingly disorganised and still so brilliant at their job.
“His family should be proud of what he achieved, and especially of the guy he was. We’re proud to have worked with him. He wasn’t a colleague, he was a mate.”
To donate to the fundraiser visit https://uk.gofundme.com/f/gareth-croker-memorial-fund-for-his-children