THE devastated family of 19-year-old man who died in hospital after suffering a “fitting” episode on a Leeds street have spoken of their loss.
Police were called at around 12pm on Sunday to Victoria Park Avenue at Bramley by a member of the public who was concerned over a man’s behaviour. Paramedics attended and Josh Edwards, (pictured) of Bramley, was taken to St James’s Hospital by ambulance.
Doctors battled to save Josh, but he died surrounded by family and friends just after 8am on Monday. Leeds United fan Josh, a mechanical engineer at Pudsey manufacturing company OMCO, was due to celebrate his 20th birthday on Monday May 22. His father Gareth Edwards, 47, said Josh was hard-working and family-oriented, adding: “He was such a loving lad... He was always happy and smiling. He would do anything for anybody.”
Josh’s mother Candace, 45, said: “He used to walk in and say ‘hi mum’ and give you a cuddle.
“Life is never going to be the same again. All the family are just broken.” Mrs Edwards added: “The last text I got from Josh was at 9.30am on Sunday saying ‘Think I’m going to go to Blackpool for the day with some friends.’ So I said OK, be careful. “At 12pm I got a phone call saying he had been found in the street, fitting.
“I have never seen such a tragic end of a life. He was such a beautiful boy.” Josh’s girlfriend Imogen Dunbar, 18, said: “He told me he loved me every single day. We had so many plans for the future.
“Next year we were going to put a deposit down for a house.”
Miss Dunbar said she and Josh had been out for a meal in Bradford to celebrate her 18th birthday on Saturday night.
She said Josh gave her a lift to a friend’s house at 2.30am because she (Miss Dunbar) was flying out to Lanzarote from Manchester Airport on Sunday morning. Miss Dunbar said she arrived in Lanzarote at 11.35am UK time and was called by police at 12.30pm, saying Josh was in hospital.
She flew back to Leeds Bradford Airport on a 9pm flight and arrived at St James’s at around 2.30am on Monday.
She said: “He made sure I got to say goodbye and give him a kiss and a cuddle before he went.”
Miss Dunbar added: “It feels like a nightmare. I just want to wake up.”
Josh also leaves sister Kailey, 24.
Josh’s friends have launched a crowdfunding campaign at www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/Joshedwardsgonebutneverforgotten which has raised more than £400 towards a £500 target to help his family.
– West Yorkshire Police said seven men aged between 18 and 21 were arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of Class A drugs following the death of Josh Edwards and were later released pending further enquiries.
A police spokesman said: “The death is not being treated as suspicious and the coroner’s office has been informed. Enquiries are ongoing into the drugs aspect.”