Published: 14:45, 13 July 2020
| Updated: 15:23, 13 July 2020
The heartbroken family of a 14-year-old boy who died suddenly have paid tribute to the "cheeky chap" who "always had a smile on his face".
Malakai Conway, who was known to most as Mally, died on Friday, July 3 after collapsing at his home in Minster on Sheppey.
He was rushed to Medway hospital but, despite the efforts of medics, he could not be saved.
Mally's sister, Michelle Conway, said her brother had been born with congenital heart disease and had undergone three open heart surgeries, the first when he was just three weeks old.
"He was fit and healthy other than his heart condition," she said. "You'd never have thought anything was wrong with him. He was a happy-go-lucky boy."
Paying tribute, Michelle, who lives in Bristol, said: "He was loving, caring, funny. He always had a smile on his face. He loved his PlayStation, never let anything phase him and was always there for everyone else.
"It's not really managed to sink in yet that he's gone."
Mally's cousin, Kelly Bell, from Sheerness, added: "He was just a cheeky chap. We used to muck about and play fight, his banter was absolutely epic. He lit up the room."
This Saturday, July 18, would have been Mally's 15th birthday. A number of bikers are set to gather in his memory.
Michelle said: "He liked bikers and there'll be a fair few coming to celebrate his life."
The teenager's funeral will be held on Tuesday, July 21. The service will be at Minster Abbey.
His family wanted to pay a special thanks to Sheerness-based funeral directors Palliser Platt & Sons for going "above and beyond" in helping them during this difficult time.
"He was just a cheeky chap. We used to muck about and play fight, his banter was absolutely epic."
Kelly said: "They've helped us to give a little boy exactly what he needs for a great send-off. I can't thank them enough."
She added: "From the very start, they've come in and, everything we worried about, they took over and took all our worries away. All we've had to do is grieve for Mally."
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family with the funeral costs. So far, it's raised more than £480 of its £800 target.
Michelle said: "We want to say thank you to everyone who has donated already. It's amazing that there are so many people out there that don't know us that have got the heart to donate."
More by this authorChloe Holmwood
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