Ride out in memory of Stevenage teenager who died suddenly
PUBLISHED: 14:41 19 September 2019 | UPDATED: 14:41 19 September 2019
Dozens of people are set to gather on bicycles for a ride out on Saturday in tribute to a teenage boy who collapsed and died suddenly in August last year.
Jordon Bell, a pupil at Barnwell School in Stevenage, died just hours after complaining of backache.
Scans showed a small tear to the 14-year-old's aorta had led to his lungs filling with blood, causing the back pain.
Jordon had a passion for bikes and his friend Danny Turner has organised a ride out, which will see Jordon's friends and family gather at Fairlands Valley Showground on Broadhall Way at 11.30am and take a route through town which will finish at Weston Road Cemetery, where Jordon is buried.
Danny's mum, Brenda, said: "Riders will set off from 1pm on cycleways and end at the cemetery, with riders able to show their respects to Jordon at his grave.
"There will be cycle competitions, with prizes donated by Contour Cycles based in Roebuck."
Danny organised a similar ride out last year, a week after Jordon's death, and even had T-shirts printed with Jordon's image and the dates of his birth and death.
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Brenda says the theme of the ride out this time is 'knives down, bikes up for Jordon'. She explained: "Obviously knife crime is a big problem and the demographic for that is highest amongst the age group which will make up lots of the riders."
The ride out is taking place during Operation Sceptre - a national knife amnesty when people can surrender any unwanted knives to the police anonymously and without fear of prosecution for possession of these items.
From now until Sunday you can surrender any knives to Hatfield, Stevenage or Watford police stations. There will also be temporary knife surrender bins in locations around the county and there are permanent ones in Waltham Cross, details of which can be found at herts.police.uk/amnesty.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Hertfordshire, David Lloyd, said: "There is always work to be done to educate the public, and young people in particular, that carrying a knife won't keep you safe and won't be tolerated.
"During the previous knife amnesty in March this year 680 knives, swords and bladed weapons were deposited in bins in Hertfordshire."
Chief Inspector Chris Treadwell, who is leading on the operational activity for Operation Sceptre, said: "During the week of action we will also be conducting other operations to reduce knife-related crime, as well as using a poster campaign and social media to help raise awareness.
"As part of a wider campaign, officers will be carrying out knife detection operations, test purchasing at knife retailers and visiting schools to deliver talks on the dangers of carrying a knife."
If you have information about knife crime, or someone carrying knives, call Herts police on non-emergency number 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.