A Whitley Bay family will attempt to climb Africa’s highest mountain during a poignant trip next month.
William Dorey died after being hit by a car while out running near his home on May 7 last year. He was aged 18 years and five months.
Joshua Cherukara had been racing his friend Harry Cable’s Vauxhall Corsa along the A193 The Links road well in excess of the speed limit.
Cherukara lost control of his vehicle and collided with William. The 20-year-old and Cable, 18, were both jailed at Newcastle Crown Court after admitting causing death by dangerous driving.
William’s parents, Hugh and Gill, and brothers Joe, 28, and Dan, 25, will attempt to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania between September 16 and 21. The summit is at an altitude of 5,895 metres.
They are paying all their own expenses so that all monies raised will go to the William Dorey Climbing Club.
His parents allocated donations to the family to the project to refurbish the climbing wall at Kings Priory School in Tynemouth, where William was in the Sixth Form.
Hugh said: “William was and remains an inspiration to our family. He was a unique, irreplaceable and much loved son and brother, a popular boy with a great sense of humour and remarkable ability to connect with people and bring out the best in them.
“From a young age he enjoyed a range of physical activities and the outdoors, particularly walking and climbing.
“It has been an ambition of mine for a number of years to climb Mount Kilimanjaro with my three boys.
“My father worked in Tanzania for the UK Government colonial service from the late 1940s to 1961 and I was born in the country in 1960. My family moved back there for a couple of years in the 1970s when he did some work for the Tanzanian Inland Revenue.
“Then, in 1986, I climbed Kilimanjaro with my father.
“We had thought about it for a few years, but had not got round to organising a trip and it’s a deep regret of mine that William will not be joining us.
“However, we decided as a family that it would be worthwhile to attempt to climb this mountain as a way of raising further funds for the William Dorey Climbing Club, which is supported by Newcastle Climbing Centre, and more awareness of William’s story.
“We’re a very close-knit family and Gill wanted to be part of the trek. The last few months have involved regular visits to the gym, Pilates sessions, bike rides and park runs to improve our fitness levels.
“If we achieve our aim, I’m sure there will be mixed emotions during the climb to the top of Kilimanjaro.
“We’ve been absolutely delighted by the tremendous response and support received, with the initial target of £1,500 reached in the first 24 hours of the online page going public.”
With friends, family and work colleagues helping to raise awareness, the total so far is now more than £4,200.
The speed limit on The Links in Whitley Bay was cut from 40mph to 30mph in May. Northumbria Police speed camera vans caught out more than 200 motorists in the first three half days they visited the road after the change.
Hugh said: “We would ask the parents of young people to talk to them about the dangers of high speed racing and the young people themselves to think about how awful a serious incident would be – not only on the family of the person caught up in such an incident, but the impact it would have on their own life.”
To make a donation to the Doreys, go to www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/william-dorey?utm_term=jx5DdKvp6