A FRIEND of Redditch & South Warwickshire Combination side VKL United was remembered at the weekend in a league fixture from which all proceeds are going to Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
United’s game against Redolence Park, which was held at Redditch United on Saturday, was played in memory of Vinay Kishor Ladwa who sadly passed away in 2013.
To raise money for the QE, entry to the game was charged and those who attended made donations throughout the 90 minutes of football, which ended 3-3.
The scorers for VKL were Stephen Spencer, Dan Hill and Charlie Jones and on the mark for Redolence Park were Ryan Bromhead and Tim Lees with a brace.
VKL assistant manager Stephen Spencer said: “Saturday night was a great success. We received a lot of support from family and friends and a lot of Vinay’s family travelled up and down the country to come and watch the game in memory of him.
“Vinay’s parents were overwhelmed with the support we received and were delighted with the effort everybody put in to make the night a very special occasion.
“I am going to the QE Hospital soon when I will give all donations to the QE.
“They are currently in sealed buckets so unfortunately until the QE count the money I don’t know how much we have raised.”
Vinay was born on January 18, 1989 with a kidney disorder and spent the majority of his life attending Birmingham Children’s Hospital several times a week for his dialysis before being moved to QE at the age of 18.
His conditioned worsened as he got older which meant he was in dire need of a kidney and liver transplant and, on June 19, 2013, he received news he could undergo the surgery.
Unfortunately, following the transplant, Vinay’s condition took a turn for the worse as he was fighting a chest infection during his recovery, from which he suffered a fatal stroke, leaving him with an aneurysm on the brain.
Despite efforts to remove the aneurysm, it ruptured on September 9, leaving Vinay needing the help of machinery to stay alive.
Just a day later Vinay sadly passed away with his friends and family surrounding him at his bedside.
In honour of Vinay, Stephen said his friends and family got together to set up a football team in his memory.
“VKL United are a team made out of the initials of Vinay’s name,” he said.
“Once a year around Vinay’s birthday, the football team hire out the Redditch United football stadium to play our league game.
“For us this isn’t just a league game, it’s an event where we do what we can to keep Vinay’s memory alive and try to get support so we can raise as much money as we can for the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
“This is our way to say thank you to the QE for all the fantastic support they gave Vinay during the time he spent in the hospital.
“We thank Redditch United for allowing us to play our game at their stadium, we thank our opponents Redolence for all their help and support and we thank everyone who attended as they helped make the night one to remember.”
The club have also set up a Facebook page in memory of Vinay which can be visited at www.facebook.com/VKL-United-515878705179322/?fref=ts.