Following the tragic accident of four teenage boys who were found dead in a car owing to a camping trip accident in the U.K., neighbors have reportedly expressed their “feelings of guilt” upon learning of the accident. The bodies of Jevon Hirst, Harvey Owen, Wilf Fitchett, and Hugo Morris, aged between 16 and 18, were reportedly recovered from the Ford Fiesta that was left on the road, according to PEOPLE.
Yahoo! News U.K. reports that the residents of Garreg, Snowdonia, where the vehicle was traced, have expressed their guilt for overlooking the site and the vehicle. Councillor June Jones states, “So many people have contacted me saying ‘I drove past so many times and didn’t notice the car. If I had been there earlier I might have been able to help’. That’s the outpouring – they are feelings of guilt.”
Per New Wales Police, the boys were reportedly missing since Sunday morning. They later found them in the car, turned topsy-turvy, and partially submerged in a body of water. A statement was released by North Wales Police Superintendent Owain Llewellyn, which read:
“This appears to have been a tragic accident, and our thoughts are with the family and friends of the four young men at this very difficult time.
He continued, “This has been an extensive search involving a number of different agencies and volunteers, and this is sadly not the outcome that any of us would have wanted. We would ask that the family be afforded the appropriate privacy and respect.”
Per The Guardian, Harvey’s mother, Crystal Owen, unburdened her grief on Facebook on Wednesday morning:
“I feel like I’m in a nightmare I wish I could wake up from but I’m not. I just wanted to say I do appreciate people’s kindness but no amount of messages is going to help me overcome this. Nothing will make this nightmare go away.”
Wilf’s girlfriend, Maddi Corfield, paid tribute to her boyfriend on Instagram: “I’m going to miss you forever. The sweetest and most loving boy I’ve ever known. Thank you for loving me endlessly, I promise I’ll do the same for you. I can’t imagine my world without you.”
Dough and Oil, the pizza place in Shrewsbury where Harvey worked before his death, closed when the news of his death started circulating the town. The business also paid tribute to Harvey, described as an “easy-going, warm, funny, gentle, bright, hardworking and humble”, young man. Hired two years ago as a dishwasher, Harvey “gave it all, developing a passion for dough and had dreams of one day opening his own bakery”, the business revealed.
According to PEOPLE, several churches and places of worship welcomed everyone for prayer by keeping their doors open. The vicar, Phil Cansdale, told The Independent U.K., “As a group of churches, we’re trying to give support to a hurting but beautiful Shrewsbury community.”
Not only that, but according to The Independent, Shrewsbury Town Council has also eliminated all plans to turn on Christmas lights in the city. They said, “Our thoughts go out to all who are caught up in this terrible tragedy.”
PEOPLE also revealed the statement shared by the teens’ school, Shrewsbury College. It offered its “deepest condolences to the family and friends” of the victims.
On Wednesday, 30 local people gathered in the drizzle to pray for the four boys at a war memorial in Garreg, as per The Guardian. The Rev Roland Barnes prayed for the “four youngsters tragically killed, taken from their loved ones in the prime of life. We know the slenderness of the thread that separates life from death and the suddenness with which that thread can be broken.”
Prayers at Garreg pic.twitter.com/m7Iusiu7J7
— steven morris (@stevenmorris20) November 22, 2023
During the memorial, people left flowers and heartfelt messages. In fact, the reports reveal that one woman had traveled from Harlech, where one of the boys was considered to have a family. She left a lantern that she had brought for Christmas and four red roses, one for each of them. She said, “I want the family to know we’re thinking about them.”