A devastated family has spoken to The Chronicle about losing their loved one who was killed in a road accident after a night out.
He had been out with friends to Rosie's nightclub in Chester the evening before the fatal collision but went missing in the early hours, prompting a social media appeal by his family before the tragedy emerged.
George, a journalism student at Staffordshire University who intended switching to a graphic design course, is survived by parents Paul and Gaynor Heath and 22-year-old brother Harry with whom he always enjoyed ‘banter’. He was ‘uncle George’ to Oscar – Harry’s partner Sophie’s little boy who will be two years old in May.
He is sadly missed by his ‘wonderful’ girlfriend Polly Gentle whom he met at university and ‘cherished very dearly’.
The family, who are ‘utterly, utterly devastated’, say ‘Team Heath’ is missing a much loved member but helping each other through the ordeal.
His tearful mum Gaynor is proud of her son George’s ‘positive’ outlook, adding: “He was warm, he was kind, he was funny.”
Dad Paul commented: “People say they live life to the max, I think it’s fair to say he got every ounce out of life, out of every minute of the day. He never stopped. If you asked him to do anything, he would never say no. If anyone asked him to do anything, if he could help, he would.”
And Paul, who thanked everyone for their kindness and support, said George was ‘a popular and well-loved young man’ across the generations and knew everyone in the village ‘from two-year-olds to 92-year-olds’.
He had become a familiar face while working at King Loui Takeaway, the nearby Crocky Trail at Waverton and most recently, the George and the Dragon, where brother Harry held a celebration of his life on Saturday evening.
Karting has been a huge part of the lives of both George and Harry.
And in 2008 The Chronicle reported that while a member of Tarporley High School’s karting team George, then aged 12, became a junior national champion, beating 24 rivals to avenge brother Harry’s defeat to the previous year’s champ.
Amazingly, he would go on to win three National Sprint Championships in total. He was still involved with the sport as a mentor and mechanic working alongside Harry who became a clerk of a course.
George, a Liverpool fan, also enjoyed playing football from five-years-old and aged seven had trials for Manchester City school boys and Tranmere Rovers. Latterly he enjoyed playing five-a-side with his Tarvin pals and as goalkeeper for his university side who on Wednesday (March 9) played a match with local rivals, Keele University, in memory of George. Teammates wore yellow armbands to match his strip.
His girlfriend Polly, from Portsmouth, who had been with him since October 2014, said: “He did more in 20 years than a lot of people do in their whole life.” And she joked that he ‘loved attention’.
George and brother Harry were described by their mum as being ‘like a comedy double act’.
'Larger than life'
Harry, who lives in Winsford, described George as ‘my incredible little brother’ and ‘a good lad’ who was ‘larger than life’.
The family say they ‘don’t really know’ the circumstances that led up to their loved being killed. An inquest will be held where they expect to find out the facts.
Dad Paul commented: “I think it’s fair to say that he’d been out for an evening with friends and beyond that it’s down to the investigation. We don’t want to dwell on that. We want to celebrate George’s life.”
On Tuesday George’s family and friends let off around 30 Chinese lanterns at the Crocky Trail where he worked last summer. Owner Ed Walley, who was not present, did not know George personally but understood he was ‘a grand lad’. He confirmed the lanterns were cattle-friendly.
Also paying tribute was George’s Staffordshire University tutor Pete Leydon, who wrote: “We’re all devastated to hear the news.
“He was a charming, personable and mature young man who was liked by everyone and had a very bright future. He was a pleasure to teach and know, and an absolute credit to his family.
“George will be sadly missed by all his friends, tutors and the whole Staffordshire University family.”
Hundreds of people have posted messages of support on Facebook and other social media.
Cheshire Police are investigating the accident and officers would like to speak to anyone who may have witnessed anything in the run-up to the incident, or witnessed the collision itself. Anyone with information is urged to contact Cheshire Police on 101, quoting incident 155 of 4/3/16.