Staff and young people at FURD have been shocked to hear of the death of one of its great characters, Kola Lucas, at the age of 25.
It appears that Kola died in his sleep of natural causes on the morning of Saturday 24th October.
Kola had been associated with the FURD project for almost ten years, being one of the first young people to sign up as a Millennium Volunteer, and was much loved by his many friends at the project. His regular Friday afternoon visits were legendary: just being in Kola's presence guaranteed a laugh and a smile.
Kola went on to work at FURD as a trainee marketing officer from September 2006 until July 2007, and the first 'Unity' newsletter in May 2007 was his brainchild. In April that year Kola was part of the FURD party that were guests of the Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Councillor Jackie Drayton, at an official reception at Sheffield Town Hall. The Lord Mayor and Kola struck up an instant rapport, posing for photos on the grand staircase.
Kola had recently returned from a summer's soccer coaching in the United States, and was discussing various ways in which he could get more involved with the work of FURD, both as a coach and as a youth worker. He was a remarkable young man who was just beginning to realise his potential, and we are all struggling to come to terms with his unbelievably tragic passing at such a young age.
We love you Kola.