The life of a teenager, “missed more than words can say”, has been celebrated by fulfilling a promise he didn’t get the chance to keep.
Kyle Bruce, 17, from Spean Bridge, who was killed in a car crash last month, always wanted to take on his big brother Lee, 19, a talented pugilist and member of the Lochaber Phoenix club, in a boxing match.
In a special ceremony on Saturday, his funeral service was held in a boxing ring at Fort William’s Nevis Centre attended by 400 heartbroken family and friends.
His devastated parents, Kevin and Andrea, from Spean Bridge, said: “We dearly wanted to give Kyle the best send-off. He always promised to get into the boxing ring and have a friendly knock-about with Lee.
“Holding his funeral in the ring was the best way to recognise the close bond between our boys.
“We have lost a wonderful son and brother and miss him more than words can say.”
Scott Greenlees, of John McLellan funeral directors in Fort William, added: “Kyle’s family was determined to make this a perfect service for him.
“They didn’t want people to mourn, but instead to celebrate Kyle’s life.”
The teenager loved cars, especially Fords, and more than 100 people led the funeral cortege from Spean Bridge into Fort William.
Mr Greenlees said: “We had a police escort and leading the cortege was a blue Ford RS, Kyle’s dream car.
“It was a beautiful ceremony and tributes to him were paid by his Mum and Dad, Lee, his girlfriend Lily and his best friend, Philip.
“When we left the centre, his friends formed a guard of honour by holding up shinty sticks.”
His father added: “As Kyle’s family, we have witnessed one of the worst tragedies in our lives. We are trying to cope with what happened and find a way forward.
“We have only lived in this area for five years and would just like to thank the people of Lochaber for the huge support and overwhelming generosity shown to us during this heartbreaking time.”
Kyle, a mechanical engineering student, was driving from Spean Bridge to Inverness college, when he died.
He was alone in his parents’ blue Audi A3 when it left the A82 on October 25.
A private family ceremony will be held today at Inverness Crematorium.