Biker escort for funeral of Torridge hero

AN escort of motorcyclists will accompany the funeral cortege of Bideford hero Sean Griffiths when it makes its way from the parish church to the town's Higher Cemetery on Friday afternoon. The 2.30pm service for the 40-year-old father of three, who died

AN escort of motorcyclists will accompany the funeral cortege of Bideford hero Sean Griffiths when it makes its way from the parish church to the town's Higher Cemetery on Friday afternoon.The 2.30pm service for the 40-year-old father of three, who died after trying to rescue a teenager from the River Torridge, will be followed by burial at the cemetery.A trike will lead the way and motorcyclists, including Harley Davidson enthusiasts, will accompany the coffin on its journey.That evening there will be a wake at Quigleys pub in Bridgeland Street.Mr Griffiths' mother Carol Jones said everyone was welcome to pay their respects and she invited them to wear at item of red."Sean used to wear a red fleece and he was very tall, so you could see him everywhere he went," she said.On Saturday night Paul and Carrie Hussey of Quigleys are holding a fund raising night for the Sean Griffiths Hero Foundation charity fund.Live bands, a disco and a charity auction - including a Harley-style biker's jacket - will all help to raise funds, with those attending asked to make a donation on the door."Sean was a good friend and a customer in the pub and we know his family," said Paul. "Since this happened there have been 500 people on a website set up in his memory. Everyone who knew him wants to do something."It was planned to hold further events at his other businesses Sherrys and Chambers in Barnstaple, said Paul.Mr Griffiths leapt into the River Torridge in an attempt to save an 18-year-old who jumped off Bideford's old bridge in the early hours of the morning last month. But he got into difficulties. Bideford policewoman Jeanne Hellyer, 23, also risked her life to go into the river and pull him ashore. But Mr Griffiths died in hospital four days later.An inquest has been opened and adjourned to a date to be fixed.


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