Vandals target memorial left at 'Samson's bridge' for popular Wigan teen
Heartless vandals tore down a memorial to a popular teenager and threw it into water close to where he died.
Friends and relatives of 18-year-old Samson Price have been left devastated by the shrine being trashed and have no idea why anyone would do it.
His mother Rosanna Price, who lives in Goose Green, said: “It’s so hurtful. It’s not an attack on Samson, because my boy’s not here, it a hurtful attack on his family.”
Letters spelling Samson’s name and a banner featuring photographs of him were placed on a bridge on Westwood Way after he drowned in nearby Westwood Lodge.
Mrs Price said she went past the shrine at around 6.40am on Tuesday and believes it was removed between 10am and 10.30am that day.
A friend of Samson’s told her about the vandalism - the same person who told her he was missing last year.
She contacted Wigan Council to ask if it had been removed by staff, but was reassured they had not done it.
She now wants to find out who has trashed the shrine and why, and hopes people who were in the area at the time will jog their memory or check dash-cam footage.
Mrs Price said: “It’s the chucking of them in the canal that’s hurtful. Because Samson died in the pond, to chuck his name and banner with his pictures in is very upsetting.”
Arrangements are now in place for another banner to be made as a replacement.
The bridge has been an important focal point for Samson’s friends.
Mrs Price said: “Everybody now calls that Samson’s bridge. It’s bittersweet. Obviously I don’t want to glorify the place where my son died, but I have had so many people saying the council should rename the bridge because they know it as Samson’s bridge.”
Samson’s close friend Olly Clarke, 18, said: “I was disgusted when I found out. It’s not an attack on Samson, it’s an attack of all of us. That’s our place.”
His cousin Luke Boswell, 18, said: “The bridge means a lot. It’s the area where he was last alive. I want to keep the tribute there or get something more permanent for him.”
Samson’s body was found in the lodge on October 4 after he went fishing the night before.
Three boys, aged 17, 18 and 19, arrested on suspicion of murder were later released without charge.
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