Two former Lancaster students pass away

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Photo courtesy of Andrew Sutherland Just Giving Page

Two former Lancaster University students have passed away in separate incidents.

26-year-old Kevin Boyle read Religious Studies at Lancaster University, withdrawing from the course in 2010.

Boyle was last spotted in Purley in South London on October 12thand had been missing ever since; his body was found on Sunday January 22nd in a back garden in London.

His post mortem was conducted on January 24th, but was unable to ascertain the cause of death.

A police spokesperson stated that: “The death is being treated as unexplained at this stage.”

Boyle was a talented chef and had cooked in Clarence House for Prince Charles, as well for Oprah Winfrey and former Prime Minister, Tony Blair. Boyle also featured on Jamie Oliver’s television program Fifteen in 2002.

Peter Fosdike, a close companion of Boyle, set up a website as a tribute to him and to encourage as many people to help find the missing 26-year-old.

Fosdike described Boyle as “intelligent, deeply sensitive and compassionate”, speaking on behalf of all those close to Boyle at Purley Baptist Church. Many people in this community joined Boyle’s friends in contacting chefs around the world in their search for him.

Fosdike’s website attracted a lot of media attention, including ‘tweets’ from celebrities such as BBC reporter Sarah Cox, as well as support from Jamie Oliver, who described him as representing all that was good in his television series, Jamie’s Kitchen, and in people.

Oliver has since expressed that he is “deeply saddened” by the news.

“I am proud to have been able to call Kevin a friend for 10 years” he said, “he was also a constant supporter of Fifteen and all the apprentices and graduates who came after him through the course.”

Professor of Religious Studies at Lancaster, Christopher Partridge, commented that “Kevin was a genuinely warm, self effacing and thoughtful person who was well liked by the all the members of the Department.”

In December 2011, former Lancaster student Andrew Sutherland sadly took his life at 27 years old.

Sutherland has been described as a bright and conscientious man who graduated with a first class degree in History from Lancaster University in 2008. He went on to complete an MA in History, being awarded a distinction.

Sutherland had been suffering severe mental health issues for some time before his death.

His family are raising funds for Mental Health Research UK, which describes itself as “the first charity in the UK dedicated to raising funds for research into mental illnesses, their causes and cures.”  The charity places a lot of focus on the particular mental illness of depression.

Sutherland’s family hopes to help researchers gain an understanding and knowledge of treatment for mental illnesses to avoid any further tragedies.

They have set up a ‘Just Giving’ webpage in memory of Sutherland, which can be found at: http://www.justgiving.com/MartinAndrew-Sutherland

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