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Mass held at St Francis Church, Maidstone, after four men die in crash on Lenham Road, near Headcorn


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Hundreds paid their respects as the coffins of four men who died in a fatal crash earlier this month were carried past.

Distraught families and friends wept as the bodies of Johnny Cash, his son Johnboy, Miles 'Smiler' Cash and Jacko Cosgrove were carried into St Francis Church in Maidstone in grey coffins.

A mass is being held for four men who died in a crash earlier this month

The group died in the early hours of Sunday, October 10, after their Toyota Hilix truck crashed on Lenham Road, near Headcorn. They lived in nearby Martins Gardens.

Johnny, 44, Smiler, 25, Johnboy, 19, and Jacko, 18, died at the scene and 15-year-old Jerry Cash was seriously injured.

The teenager remains in King's College Hospital, London.

This afternoon, screams of “that’s my boy” were also met with cheers as the coffins were lifted from the vehicles and walked into the church, where a 30-minute mass was held and the loved ones of all four men mourned together.

Many people attending congregated outside the church, opposite the Society Rooms Wetherspoon.

Pictures are held aloft of the victims of a crash which claimed four lives on October 10, near Headcorn
Pictures are held aloft of the victims of a crash which claimed four lives on October 10, near Headcorn
Pictures are held aloft of the victims of a crash which claimed four lives on October 10, near Headcorn
Pictures are held aloft of the victims of a crash which claimed four lives on October 10, near Headcorn

Large pictures of the family members were carried behind the coffins, as they were taken into the place of worship.

Inside, the building was packed, with many mourners left to stand.

Four by Brave Giant played as hundreds of people left St Francis' and watched as the coffins were returned to the hearses.

The parked vehicles from attendees – most on the paths near Maidstone East train station – and considerable crowds caused some problems for traffic.

Inside the packed church all benches were full up with many people left standing as Father Liam Gallagher and Deacon Reverend Ian Black read three prayers during the short mass.

The victims of the car crash, from L-R: Johnboy Cash, 'Smiler' Cash, Jacko Cosgrove and Jonny Cash
The victims of the car crash, from L-R: Johnboy Cash, 'Smiler' Cash, Jacko Cosgrove and Jonny Cash

Father Gallagher told of his shock when hearing the tragic news from family friends and immediately prayed for the deceased.

As hundreds flooded back out the church doors the coffins and their flowers were carried back outside to the hearses by emotional family members.

Following the tragedy, hundreds of tributes were left at the scene of the crash, a cross has been erected and the names of the victims carved into a damaged tree.

Jacko, the youngest, had been a member of Tenterden Amateur Boxing Club and had recently learned his wife was expecting.

Johnboy had become a dad just six weeks ago.

A mass is being held at St Francis Church in Maidstone, after the death of four men in a crash on Sunday, October 10
A mass is being held at St Francis Church in Maidstone, after the death of four men in a crash on Sunday, October 10
Mourners outside St Francis Church, in Maidstone, where a mass is being held after four men died in a horror crash on Sunday, October 10 (52623109)
Mourners outside St Francis Church, in Maidstone, where a mass is being held after four men died in a horror crash on Sunday, October 10 (52623109)
Mourners outside St Francis Church, in Maidstone, as the coffins of four men who died in a crash on Sunday, October 10, are carried in
Mourners outside St Francis Church, in Maidstone, as the coffins of four men who died in a crash on Sunday, October 10, are carried in

His wife Grace left a tribute of lilies by the side of the road "In Loving Memory of a Dear Husband".

She wrote: “To my Baby. I love you so much and your baby Bridie loves you, too.”

One family member visiting the scene of the crash said: “They were all lovely men. It is so sad. It is a shame so many lives have been lost in one time.

“It has affected wives, kids, brothers and cousins. So many have been hurt at once. They are never going to get over this.”

Boxer Tyson Fury paid tribute to the four men in a video message.

Floral tributes line Lenham Road, the scene of a crash which claimed four lives on Sunday, October 10
Floral tributes line Lenham Road, the scene of a crash which claimed four lives on Sunday, October 10

The 33-year-old WBC champion, fresh from winning the Las Vegas classic, said: "I'd like to send my condolences and rest in peace to the Cash family and the Cosgrove family on their recent loss.

"God bless them, make them a good bed in heaven, right in the name of Jesus Amen."

The men had been on their way to watch The Gypsy King's trilogy fight with Deontay Wilder when the crash happened.

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