Tragedy of “bright and considerate” boy, 16, who died just hours after collapsing in church


A grieving father has today spoken of his devastation after his only son died just hours after collapsing in church.

16-year-old Calvin Middleton had been to an evening church service with his family and had hugged his dad just before going to the toilet after he said he thought he was going to be sick.

When he didn’t return, concerned dad Andrew found him face down and unconscious in the cubicle after he had suffered a sudden bleed to the brain.

It was just hours later that nurses told the family that he had gone.

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Less than two days from his tragic death, his family have spoken openly to the Manchester Evening News as they grieve the loss of their “bright and considerate boy.”

Teenager Calvin Middleton would go to Cheadle Hulme Methodist Church alongside dad Andrew, mum Jenny and two younger sisters Susie and Bethan.

They had visited as usual on Sunday, February 13, and had enjoyed the service when Calvin complained of a headache at around 7.30pm.

What he thought was just a migraine was actually an intracranial hemorrhage – a small vein in the back of his head which had burst.

He passed out in the bathroom and never regained consciousness, despite medics’ desperate efforts to revive him.

He was pronounced dead shortly after 2am on Monday morning, February 14.

He was just months away from sitting his GCSEs and had a promising future ahead of him studying maths and computer science when his life was cut short.

The “bright and considerate boy” had a promising future studying maths and computer science

“One minute my son was there, and the next he had just gone,” said dad Andrew, speaking through the tears.

“He had given me a hug after the service and said he needed to go to the toilet as he had a headache and might be sick.

“That was the last time I would ever get to speak to my son or see him conscious again.

“My wife had gone in to see if he was okay, and didn’t hear anything from him. I went in and saw him lying face down on the floor of the cubicle.

“The ambulance and police came within minutes and were so compassionate and amazing with us all.”

Calvin was immediately rushed to Salford Royal Hospital for treatment.

His blood pressure had dropped too low for doctors to operate – and any operations carried out may have resulted in Calvin being left with life altering disabilities.

“The nurses did everything they could, but it was just not meant to be. It was his time to go.

“After they told us he could end up with disabilities, I just begged them to do whatever they could.

“They sat with us for hours and just wept as we prayed for him.

Calvin with dad Andrew, mom Jenny and two younger sisters Susie and Bethan.

“Every interaction we had with police and the paramedics was so compassionate and human and I will remember that forever.

“This could’ve happened to anyone anymore at anytime and just shows how precious every moment with your loved ones is. We cannot grasp that he is not here.

“He just slipped away in a moment.

“He was such an intelligent boy, he was a prefect who was in top sets at school for everything and always wanted to do as best as he could.

“There were times I look back on now when he asked me to help him with his revision and I couldn’t have taken three hours out of my evening to help.

“I now am sat thinking we no longer have those hours together and I wish I’d have done and cherished every single second I had with him.

“He was such a bright and considerate human being. I had such a bright future planned for him.”

Calvin passed out in the bathroom and never regained consciousness, despite medics’ desperate efforts to revive him.

The family, who currently live in Alsagar, Cheshire, have set up a fundraising page to raise money to go towards the church’s efforts to help disadvantaged children in Zimbabwe.

Their original target of £500 has been massively surpassed, with donations now already over £5,000.

Andrew added: “We just cannot believe how unbelievable the response has been and how kind humans truly can be to one another.

“As a family, we would much rather people donate the money to something positive and constructive than buy cards and flowers.

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“Calvin was a dedicated Liverpool fan who had previously undergone treatment at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital for a heart issue unrelated to his death.

“He would be happy that we were asking people to donate for this amazing and useful cause. He has appreciated the Christian influence of Jurgen Klopp and players like Firmino and Allison.”

Plans are now being made for Calvin’s burial to be held at St Mary’s Church in Sandbach next week.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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