West Rainton players stage memorial match for former team mate — (Chronicle Live)

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Chronicle Live

Aug 28 2011 

FORMER team-mates of a talented young footballer will take to the field today in his honour.

Jamie Vayro, 22, who had played football at schoolboy level for Durham County, was found dead in bed at his grandparents’ home in West Rainton, Durham, on August 1SSRI Editor, 2008.

His death was put down to a suspected accidental overdose after he was prescribed medication for depression.

Before the tragedy he had been top goalscorer the previous season with local Sunday league team Hallgarth Manor.

Jamie’s parents, Andrew Vayro and Tracey Wilkinson, and other family members organised the first football match in his memory on August Bank Holiday 2009, soon after the first anniversary of his death.

The game was such a success that it has become an annual event, although the game has switched to a Sunday this year.

Tracey, 44, from Newton Hall, Durham, said: “Jamie loved football, he was a Newcastle United supporter.

“Having a match in his memory is a fitting tribute to him, something he would have loved.”

Tracey, a drug and alcohol counsellor, added: “West Rainton are playing a combined team made up of many of Jamie’s former team-mates. They all wanted to play in his memory.” After the game a barbecue, charity raffle and karaoke session will be held at the Masons Arms pub, known locally as the Top House, in West Rainton.

Tracey said her family have applied for planning permission to install two benches in her son’s memory, one at West Rainton and the other near her home in Newton Hall.

Shortly before his death, Jamie broke the news to his mum that he had been abused by a once-trusted family friend.

The pervert pleaded guilty to a series of sex attacks on youngsters dating back to 1980 when he appeared at Durham Crown Court back in 2001. He is now free but is on the sex offenders’ register for life.

Tracey said: “When the man was arrested Jamie said nothing. He kept it bottled up for years. It was only much, much later that he told me he had been abused as well. It was very hard for him to cope and very hard for me too.

“There was nowhere to go to for counselling in the Durham area. That is why I have set up an organisation with my sister-in-law Nichola Hall to help victims and families of childhood abuse, in Jamie’s name.”

The game kicks off at 1.30pm on the playing fields at West Rainton.