James is a son, brother, Grandson, nephew, cousin, but most of all a hero.
He was full of love, and loved life. He was a caring, giving and loving boy, who gave the best hugs you could ever wish for. James was born on 18 November 2002, and quite quickly established his place in the family as the hungry one. He loved to eat, he would come home from school, grab two bananas and four tangerines and demolish them before tea.
James was a bright boy, learning to read ahead of his age and becoming a member of The Gifted and Talented Club. He loved school, learning, playing and helping others. Quite simply, he loved life. He would spend hours swimming, playing football, or bouncing on his trampoline. He loved to climb trees and rocks, and to slide down sand dunes, or snowy hills. He could make his own entertainment anywhere. That’s not to say he wouldn’t sit on his xbox for hours either. He mastered Minecraft in no time at all, and still loved to play football, action and music making games too.
In October 2013, he was given the opportunity to have a tour of his beloved Goodison Park, the home of Everton Football Club. He learnt the history of the club, walked in the footsteps of his heroes, met the team players (who signed his kit) and had his photograph taken in the Press Room. Then to top it all off he got to play on the pitch at half time in front of 38,000 Everton Fans and watch the game (Everton winning 2-1 to Hull). After the game he told his family it had been the best day of his life.
Little did we know just a few days later his life would be cut short.
Following his accident, his family received a huge outpouring of love and hundreds of messages offering support. James always liked to help people, so it was decided that a Just Giving page would be set up for donations in lieu of flowers for his funeral. Never was it imagined that £11,000 would be donated to Autism Together (previously known as The Wirral Autistic Society) in James’ name.
The donation was used to furnish a special room in their Rainbow Resource Centre with specialised equipment, toys and furniture. The room is called ‘James’ Den’.
And here began the journey to what is now The James Greenop Foundation.