Wilmington fundraising sensation, 13, recognised in New Year's Honours List
PUBLISHED: 16:35 05 January 2016 | UPDATED: 16:35 05 January 2016
Jonjo Heuerman has become the youngest person to be awarded the British Empire Medal
A Wilmigton teenager, who has raised almost a quarter of a million pounds for charity, has become the youngest person to be awarded the British Empire Medal.
Jonjo Heuerman, 13, has taken on a number of cycling and walking challenges, covering thousands of miles after his grandmother Lyn died from bowel cancer in February 2009.
A keen West Ham United fan, Jonjo has raised nearly £250,000 for the Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK.
After receiving the news, he said: “I was really surprised and very proud to hear I was on the New Year’s Honours List.
“I didn’t even know what a British Empire Medal was.
“I never realised my fundraising would go this far.”
The teenager has received praise from a number of footballers for his efforts, which included an 800 mile trip to visit all 20 Premier League grounds earlier this year.
“We’re very proud,” dad, Gary said.
“When that letter came through the door it was fantastic - it had a Cabinet Office stamp all over it so we knew it was important.
“We obviously let Jonjo open it as it was addressed to him and he said ‘I’ve won another award’ - I don’t think he realised the importance of it.
“Keeping the news secret from everyone, particularly his grandparents, was extremely difficult.”
“Going to Buckingham Palace in the summer will be very exciting, I just hope he picks his mum and dad as his two guests.”
Jonjo is set to take a short break from fundraising before embarking on his next challenge in March: atwo-week cycle from Germany to Wembley Stadium.