‘There isn’t a nicer person on the planet.’ Tributes have been paid to a teen who became a legend after drowning on the hottest day of the year.
A FAMOUS student was characterized as a “genuine legend” after drowning in a canal on the warmest day of the year.
Ngapee Merenga, 19, is believed to have been swimming with friends from his football team on Sunday when he became disoriented. Several of his friends are believed to have tried in vain to save him until emergency services arrived at Salford Quays in Greater Manchester.
The teen’s body, however, was discovered at 7.40 p.m. in the Manchester Ship Canal, three hours after the massive search operation began.
The Manchester Evening News reports that emotional tributes had been paid to the Sunday league goalscorer.
Yahya Mazhar, 18, said he and Ngapee had just finished playing a game for East Central Falcons FC in Ardwick, Manchester, just hours before the tragedy.
“We had been swimming and had been here for approximately an hour,” Yahya explained.
“We were about to leave when Ngapee expressed an interest in jumping in one final time.
“He dove right in and never came out.”
The tragedy was described as “devastating” by Yahya.
At the water’s edge, people have inscribed heartfelt words in chalk.
Ngapee was described as being quite popular and welcoming.
“He was always such a nice guy and always smiling,” Yahya, from Longsight, Manchester, added.
“Even if we lost a football game, he’d always find a way to pull our spirits back up.
“I used to exercise with him, and he meant a lot to all of us.”
Ngapee, who studied sports science at college, was the top goal scorer for East Central Falcons FC last season, scoring 17 goals in 14 games and adding two assists.
East Central Falcons manager and coach Mike Edwards characterized Ngapee as “a great legend.”
“He always gave his all for the squad, and he was our leading goal scorer,” he said.
“Neither could you have met a nicer person.
“Words can’t express the range of emotions that individuals are experiencing right now.
“They played a game as a coach and manager, and then everyone went outside to enjoy the sun.
“Then you wake up to the dreadful news that Ngapee has passed away.
“Right now, the most essential thing is for everyone to accept what has transpired.
“Today, my colleagues and I have gone here to pay our respects and ensure that he rests in peace.”
On Sunday, Salford Quays was bustling with families and visitors. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”