One of Britain’s youngest Lotto winners dies suddenly aged 23 – after scooping £390,000 prize at 16
- Callum Fitzpatrick had been working at his parents’ shop when he won in 2014
- The ‘wonderful, intelligent young man’ was studying for his A-levels at the time
- He still completed a degree in civil engineering at Ulster University despite win
- Mr Fitzpatrick, 23, of County Down, is survived by his parents and three sisters
One of Britain’s youngest ever National Lottery winners has died suddenly aged 23, less than seven years after he scooped a £390,000 jackpot at just 16 years old.
Callum Fitzpatrick, of Ballymartin, County Down, had been working at his parents ‘grocery store when he won the prize in October 2014.
The ‘wonderful, intelligent young man’ was studying for his A-levels at the time and still completed a degree in civil engineering at Ulster University despite his win.
Mr Fitzpatrick – who is survived by his parents Colin and Sheila and three younger sisters Tierna, Corragh and Meagh – had vowed to buy a new car when he turned 17.
The sports fan, who played for local Gaelic team Ballymartin GAC, was a Manchester United supporter and had also wanted to spend his winnings on visiting Old Trafford.
National Lottery winner Callum Fitzpatrick is pictured in October 2014 aged 16 with his parents Sheila and Colin during the cheque presentation ceremony today after he won £390,000
Mr Fitzpatrick’s funeral was held last Friday at St Colman’s Church, Massforth in Kilkeel – with mourners hearing that his death was ‘completely devastating’.
His sister Tierna Fitzpatrick wrote on Facebook: ‘My best friend/brother I could of ever asked for. You’ll never know how much we all loved you.’
And friend Matthew McAstocker, said: ‘Still can’t believe I’m writing this mate. If only you knew how many people loved you. I’ll never forget the memories we shared.’
Aaron Smith added: ‘I still can’t believe Callum is gone from our lives. Callum was a good friend, pleasure to work alongside in the Harbour Inn. Callum would be missed by all, rest easy mate.’
Civil engineering graduate Callum Fitzpatrick, of Ballymartin, County Down, has died suddenly
And Michaela Rodgers wrote: ‘Today we said goodbye to a such a lovely friend, you have left so many memories that we will cherish forever.
‘You will never be forgotten, you will be remembered by how such an amazing person you were. Fly high, Callum, until we meet again.’
A Ballymartin GAC spokesman said: ‘The entire community of Ballymartin and surrounding area of Mourne is heartbroken.
‘We offer our sincere condolences to his father Colin, mother Sheila, sisters Tierna, Corragh and Meagh and wider family circle, a lot of whom are deeply rooted in our club at all levels.
Mr Fitzpatrick had been working at his parent’s grocery store when he won the prize in 2014
‘As a mark of respect there will be no onfield activity at the club grounds until further notice. Callum will be sorely missed by everyone involved with Ballymartin GAC.
‘A wonderful, intelligent young man, a great friend and teammate, tragically has left this life too soon. May he rest in peace.’
In 2014, Mr Fitzpatrick had been babysitting at his aunt’s house in Bryansford when he realised he had the winning lottery numbers.
He was studying for his A-levels at St Malachy’s High School in Castlewellan at the time, and insisted he would still attend university despite the win.
Speaking after his win in 2014, he told the Daily Mirror: ‘I was shocked and I feel very lucky. I’ve not really been able to sleep since.
‘I think I want to buy a car in January when I turn 17. I just want a normal car.’
He added that his family insisted he should still work in their shop, saying: ‘My mum has said I have to keep going and helping out, but that’s OK – I want to stay normal.’
Mr Fitzpatrick’s winning numbers were 1, 22, 30, 40, 47 and the bonus ball 42.
He added: ‘I really couldn’t believe it as the first five numbers that were drawn out were all mine. When I finally realised it was true, I burst into tears.’
The Manchester Unite fan played for local Gaelic team Ballymartin GAC, who paid tribute
Mr Fitzpatrick then phoned his father Colin, who told the Mirror at the time: ‘I realised from the sound of his voice and how he was talking it was actually true.’
He wasn’t the first teenager in Northern Ireland to win a big lottery prize, with Tracey Makin from Belfast having just turned 16 when she won more than £1million in 1998.
Following Mr Fitzpatrick’s death, his family have asked for donations to the Public Initiative for the Prevention of Suicide and Self-harm (PIPS), based in Belfast.
For confidential support in the UK call the Samaritans on 116123, visit a local Samaritans branch or click here for details
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