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Heartbreaking tributes to Cranbrook's Joe Atkins and Freddie McLennan as families raise money for Sam West Foundation

The family of a Cranbrook teenager killed in a crash while travelling in Bolivia are raising money for charity.

Joe Atkins and Freddie McLennan both died on Sunday after a car they were travelling in crashed on the Salar de Uyuni saltflat.

The former Cranbrook School students were due to come home from their travels tomorrow.

Joe Atkins died in Bolivia on Sunday (12291317)
Joe Atkins died in Bolivia on Sunday (12291317)

Joe's family paid respect to a son that gave them "endless pride".

They said: "Joe had a character brimming with kindness and humility, and anyone that knew him was struck by his understated yet self-assured nature. Quietly intuitive, he always knew the right thing to say, and the role that he decided to play as the calming presence and fiercely loyal friend, will be forever appreciated by those that knew him.

"Always seeking the fun side of life as a little boy, he grew up to be a young man that loved family dog walks as much as nights out with friends, and he remained quietly ambitious and determined in his pursuit of a career in engineering, for which he achieved such fantastic A Level results.

"In a recent call to his family, he was clearly so elated with the adventure he'd been sharing with his best friends. He said just how much we was looking forward to being back to enjoy home comforts, and to move on to the next stage at the University of Bristol.

'The role he decided to play as the calming presence and fiercely loyal friend will be forever appreciated.'

"Joey was the son that gave us endless pride, the brother that brought laughter to our home and the friend that you'd always want by your side.

“The Atkins family have set up a Just Giving page in memory of Joe. All proceeds will go to The Sam West Foundation, which raises awareness and support for young people with mental health difficulties. Set up by Ben West, Sam's brother and Joe's school friend, Joe would have been delighted to have supported this brilliant charity."

Freddie McLennan's family said friends had lost a "special individual".

They said: “Freddie was an exceptional young man. As a son, brother, grandson, cousin and friend to all those who knew him, he was as caring as he was fun to be with.

“He excelled at school and his exam results were a source of great pride.

“He was thoroughly enjoying his opportunity to travel and experience new parts of the world, before preparing for the next stage in his life at Leeds University.

Freddie McLennan died in Bolivia on Sunday (12291319)
Freddie McLennan died in Bolivia on Sunday (12291319)

“The friends he made through Cranbrook school and the different sports clubs he played with over the years, know they have also lost a special individual.

“We are eternally grateful that Freddie came into our lives. We are struggling to come to terms with his passing. He brought a joy and love to us, which we will always remember, but miss greatly.

“His whole family would ask you to respect their privacy at this extremely difficult time.”

A third teen remains in hospital in Bolivia, all three attended Cranbrook School together.

The school's headmaster led tributes to Freddie and Joe yesterday.

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