Published: 15:36, 30 June 2020
| Updated: 16:47, 30 June 2020
A heartbroken parent has paid tribute to his football-mad son after he died in tragic circumstances.
Former Meopham Secondary School pupil Elliott Holmes died last week aged 19 following a lifelong battle with mental health issues.
Step-dad Peter Scutts, from Gravesend, led tributes to his son who moved to Istead Rise four years ago and was "popular" and "well loved" by his friends.
In a tribute posted online, he said: "It is with great sadness to let you know Kerry and myself lost our son and stepson, Elliott, at the young age of 19 in such tragic circumstances on Wednesday night.
"A bright young man, with the world at his feet. We are both heartbroken. Overnight, our world has fallen apart and will never be the same.
"You will be greatly missed every day and will remain forever in our hearts. Rest in Peace, our dearest darling Elliott."
Peter explained how his son, who attended Sedley's primary school in Southfleet, had suffered from mental health problems from the age of nine.
"There wasn't any signs of him taking his life – he was always very happy and smiley."
They had sought professional help but no one was able to "get through" to his son who often masked his dark thoughts behind smiles.
"It is the silent killer," Peter said. "There wasn't any signs of him taking his life – he was always very happy and smiley.
"A sort of Robin Williams, really – he kept it all to himself."
Despite the dark thoughts, he said Elliott led a very active social life and had lots of friends in Istead Rise and Meopham who adored him.
"All of his friends have said he was the fun person," he said. "He was the one they wanted to be with in a group.
"He loved football and was always out playing with his friends."
Elliott, who had not long left school, was also very much a "typical teenager", Peter added, and was addicted to social media and regularly posted funny videos on Tik Tok.
Peter added he was "so, so proud" of Elliott's friends who had been sending messages of support and leaving flowers.
"Our world has fallen apart, but your support is helping to lift us, more than you’ll ever know," he told them.
Scores of tributes to Elliott have been made in response to dad Peter's message.
One read: "Elliott had such a caring heart and was just a lovely lad. Everyone that knew him had only kind words to say."
Another added: "I'm so so sorry. He was an amazing and such a strong boy, one of the loveliest people I’ve ever met."
"Elliott had such a caring heart and was just a lovely lad."
Friends have set up a fundraising page for mental healthy charity Mind in Elliott's memory to raise awareness for those struggling had amassed more than £6,000 in donations to date.
They are also arranging a walk to take place at one of Elliott's favourite spots, Camer Park in Meopham, from 2pm on Saturday.
However, they are insisting that everyone adheres to the rules around social distancing.
His family will also be in attendance and people are being asked to wear blue and let off blue balloons to celebrate his life.
Click here to donate to the Mind fundraiser in memory of Elliott.
For confidential support on an emotional issue, call Samaritans on 116 123 at any time.
If you want to talk to someone confidentially, click here.
More by this authorSean Delaney
This website and its associated newspaper are members of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO)