Monday 25 September 2017

Thousands of mourners attend the funeral of brave Bradley Lowery

The funeral procession leaves St Joseph's Church following the funeral of Bradley Lowery
The funeral procession leaves St Joseph's Church following the funeral of Bradley Lowery

Tom Wilkinson

Premier League footballer Jermain Defoe wore an England shirt for the funeral of his six-year-old "best friend", Bradley Lowery, whose cancer battle captured hearts around the world.

Thousands of people lined the streets of Blackhall, County Durham, ahead of the service at St Joseph's Catholic Church, where the youngster was baptised six years ago.

Jermain Defoe built up a special bond with Bradley Lowery
Jermain Defoe built up a special bond with Bradley Lowery

A piper lead the horse-drawn carriage carrying his coffin through the village, which came to a halt to pay tribute to the little boy with the beaming smile.

Some released balloons as the cortege passed and a spontaneous round of applause broke out.

Mourners dressed in superhero costumes followed the funeral procession.

Read More: 'God has you in his arms and I will always carry you in my heart' - Jermain Defoe's emotional tribute to Bradley Lowery

David Moyes departs St Joseph's Church after the funeral service of Bradley Lowery
David Moyes departs St Joseph's Church after the funeral service of Bradley Lowery

Defoe, now signed for Bournemouth, left training in Spain to attend.

Former Sunderland FC manager David Moyes was also among the congregation.

Defoe struck up a remarkable friendship with Bradley after the little boy appeared as a mascot for his beloved Sunderland.

Bradley died a week ago in his parents' arms at home following a battle with the rare childhood cancer neuroblastoma.

Jermain Defoe travelled from Spain to attend the funeral of his 'best friend' Bradley Lowery
Jermain Defoe travelled from Spain to attend the funeral of his 'best friend' Bradley Lowery
The coffin of Bradley Lowery leaves St Joseph's Church in Blackhall
The coffin of Bradley Lowery leaves St Joseph's Church in Blackhall

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