FRIENDS of a young man who tragically took his own life are honouring his memory by kicking off a charity fundraiser.

Jack Nicolson died in December 2019 at the age of just 22 after he lost his battle with depression, leaving family and friends devastated.

Since Jack's death, they have been determined to raise awareness of depression and of the importance of speaking out.

Close friends Jack Graham, Lewis McShane, Andrew Milne and Ryan Hempseed, who have all been pals since primary one, have now organised a special football match in his honour.

The game will take place at Broomhill in Greenock on June 19 and all of the sponsorship money raised will go to suicide prevention charity Man On! Inverclyde.

Jack's dad Peter says the match is an amazing gesture which will help to raise awareness of the impact of depression.

Peter told the Tele: "I honestly can't thank these boys enough.

"They're keeping Jack's memory going.

"He was never off the pitch up here.

"He loved his football, and his pool.

"The boys have been an amazing source of support to me since Jack passed.

"This match will really help other people."

Peter says Jack's life was going well in the months leading up to his death.

He was manager at the busy Costcutter store at West Station, worked in a tyre shop and also did shifts in the Broomhill Tavern.

The hard-working young man had previously been a Tele paperboy for many years.

Peter says his son's death came as a huge shock to everyone around him.

He said: "I didn't know he had depression.

"He was shy and he kept it all to himself.

"He was working three jobs and had a girlfriend and everything was going well for him.

"It's still raw.

"I wouldn't wish it on anyone."

Jack was close to his brother Peter and sister-in-law Bernie, and loved his wee nieces Millie and Skye and his nephew Zach.

He even received a guard of honour from the fire service at his funeral and people from all over Inverclyde paid their respects.

Just a week before he died, the proud uncle had asked for a picture with his two beloved nieces.

Peter said: "Jack absolutely hated getting his photo taken but just a week before he passed away, he asked for a photo with Millie and Skye.

"His death has affected so many people around here and beyond.

"People still stop me to speak to me and they have tears in their eyes.

"He was so well thought of by people."

Jack's friends are looking forward to the tribute match later this month and they plan to do something in his honour every year.

They have already raised around £1,000 in just under a week.

Jack Graham said the guys have been overwhelmed by the support for the match.

He said: "After Jack passed away, we spoke about doing something in his memory.

"We got a seven-a-side games organised between ourselves and then more and more people wanted to join in, so we're now at 11-a-side.

"Things have been put back a bit due to coronavirus but we're glad that we can do something now.

"When Jack was a wee guy, he was always up here kicking about.

"He was Rangers daft and would go to the Broomhill bar.

"He was never off the pitch."

Jack says that his friend's passing has made everyone in the group stop and think about their own mental health.

He added: "It brought it so close to home for us and was so unexpected.

"We now all make sure we check that we're okay."

Lewis added: "This is a very fitting thing for us to do for Jack because we were playing games up here every weekend.

"The amount of people interested in getting involved just shows how well thought of he was.

"If this had happened to any one of us, Jack would have done the same thing."

A Man On! Inverclyde spokesperson said: "This is an amazing tribute from the lads for their friend Jack.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Jack's friends and family at this incredibly difficult time.

"If there are any young men out there struggling at the moment, please reach out."

To donate to the charity match visit


FITTING TRIBUTE: Lewis McShane, Andrew Milne, Man On representative John Bethel, Jack's dad Peter and front, Ryan Hempseed and Jack Graham.