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Tribute to a lost mate

SOMBRE: Lee and Mitch Botting outside a debutante ball in Albury on Saturday night which paid tribute to their late son and brother, Spencer.FRIENDS of late teenager Spencer Botting have paid their respects to their friend during an emotional debutante ball in Albury.
Nanjing Night Net

The popular 16-year-old, who was killed in a car crash in May, had been due to attend Saturday night’s event at the Albury Entertainment Centre.

Instead, his friends were remembering the former Wodonga Senior Secondary College and marking his life by donning red –his favourite colour.

Spencer’s family also attended and sat on the same table as Rylea Brooks, who had been due to go to the ball with Spencer.

Lee Botting said rather than getting easier to cope with, his son’s death was becoming more painful with time.

“We really miss him,” he said.

“At the start, I was expecting him to walk through the door every day.

“His brother said to me last week, ‘my brother’s not coming home, is he?’.

“That was tough.

“But there are so many reminders of Spencer which is great for us.

“All of his mates, they’ll never forget him.”

Rylea lit a red candle during Saturday night’s deb ball and broke down several times while reading out a speech remembering Spencer.

Spencer Flynn, who was a passenger in the utility that rolled at Staghorn Flat, also attended.

“He’s still suffering,” Mr Botting said.

“He looked me in the eye and said it has changed his life forever.”

Mr Botting is continuing to look at ways to educate young people on road safety so that other families won’t have to go through the pain of losing a loved one.

He hopes to use the utility involved in the fatal crash if possible, and take the vehicle to young people to show them the impact of road trauma.

“The kids want it themselves,” he said.

“They all want something positive to come from this.”

Officers from the Major Collision Investigation Unit, which is investigating the crash, will head to the Border this week to conduct interviews.

FLAME: Rylea Brooks lights a candle in memory of Spencer. Picture: DYANNE PHOTOGRAPHY

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