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Tributes paid to Ipswich, and formerly Soham, man and avid Ipswich Town Football Club fan Ben Moore who died aged 22





A heartbroken family have paid tribute to a lifelong Ipswich Town fan who died aged 22 and ‘faced every day with strength, courage and determination’.

Ben Moore, of Ipswich and formerly of Soham, was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia in November 2022 after he fell ill while attending a football match.

In the last few weeks of his life, his beloved club returned the love he had shown them since he was aged five, with players visiting him in hospital to deliver signed shirts, inviting him to the game against Norwich, and attending a session at the club’s training ground.

Ben Moore with ITFC players Conor Chaplin and Wes Burns, shortly before his death. Picture supplied by his family
Ben Moore with ITFC players Conor Chaplin and Wes Burns, shortly before his death. Picture supplied by his family

Ben died yesterday (December 28) in the Somersham Ward of Ipswich Hospital.

In his honour, Ipswich Town will host a minute’s applause at tonight’s fixture against QPR.

In a statement sent to SuffolkNews on behalf of his family, Ben’s mum, Hayley Coleman, said: “We are heartbroken to have lost him, it is painful beyond words.

Lifelong Blues fan Ben at Portman Road. Picture supplied by family
Lifelong Blues fan Ben at Portman Road. Picture supplied by family

“We will live as he did, facing every day with courage, strength and determination, making the most of every day.

“We cannot thank the staff of Somersham Ward enough for the love and care that they showed Ben.

“The dedication they have to their jobs, patients, and our darling boy is immeasurable. They truly are angels.”

To give thanks for their support during his final weeks, Ben’s family – at his behest – are raising money for Somersham Ward.

Ben died on December 28. Picture supplied by his family
Ben died on December 28. Picture supplied by his family

The fund-raiser can be found here.

Following his diagnosis, Ben underwent chemotherapy at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge and, in May this year, he underwent a successful stem cell transplant, after his sister Rebecca donated some of hers.

Hayley praised the ‘amazing’ staff at Addenbrooke’s, alongside the Teenage Cancer Trust, which ran the ward he stayed in.

Ben went back into care at Ipswich Hospital during the summer, when he started suffering from repeat infections. And in October, he and his family were given the news that his leukaemia had spread to his liver and he was given a few months to live.

Ben in hospital. Picture supplied by family
Ben in hospital. Picture supplied by family

Hayley said his unwavering love for The Blues did not falter in his final weeks.

Wes Burns and Conor Chaplin visited him in hospital and presented him with signed shirts, one from them, and another from the team.

Ben was also invited to attend the game against Norwich where he met with the players and manager, Kieran McKenna.

Ben's mum said he faced everyday with courage, strength and determination. Picture supplied by family
Ben's mum said he faced everyday with courage, strength and determination. Picture supplied by family

He later attended a session at the club’s training ground in Playford Road alongside his father, Mike, once again meeting with the team.

Hayley said Ben was very ill the day before, but ‘dragged himself out of bed’ to attend.

“We are thankful, too, to ITFC for the love they have shown Ben,” she said. “They are his heroes, and in the last few weeks of life they gave that love back to Ben. Thank you.”

Ben Moore. Picture supplied by family
Ben Moore. Picture supplied by family

According to Hayley, Ben was born 16 weeks premature on October 10, 2001, and was given a slim chance to live.

Should he have survived, she said, his family were warned that he may not be able to walk and talk.

Hayley said: “Not only did he survive, he did all of those things that were not expected of him.”

Ben attended a number of schools during his life, including St Mary’s Playgroup in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich, before heading to Springfeld Primary School, where he stayed until Year 1.

Ben Moore. Picture supplied by family
Ben Moore. Picture supplied by family

In 2008, the family moved to Soham, where he attended St Andrew’s Primary School.

Hayley said he occasionally struggled in school due to learning, speech and language delays, but was offered fantastic support from his teachers.

He made strong bonds with staff at the school, which lasted throughout his life – and his old teacher Pam Cole and teaching assistant Bev Barber visited him in the days before his death.

He later attended both Soham Village College and Cambridge Regional College before moving back to Ipswich in 2022.

Picture supplied by family
Picture supplied by family

He also played football with Soham United and Soham Town Rangers.

A long-term season ticket holder, Ben would attend Town games with siblings, and later his group of friends, and enjoyed the highs and lows of being a football fan.

Hayley said he would stay at Portman Road for as long as he could.

Ben in hospital. Picture supplied by family
Ben in hospital. Picture supplied by family

After his death, the club he loved so much paid tribute to him.

A spokesman for Ipswich Town Football Club said: “The thoughts of everyone at the club are with the family and friends of Ben Moore, who passed away this morning following a battle with illness, aged 22.

“Ben, a lifelong fan, had spent time with the Town squad in recent weeks and attended a training session at Playford Road with his father, Mike.

“He will be greatly missed.

“Once a Blue, always a Blue.”

Ben is survived by mum, Hayley and her partner Richard, dad Mike and his wife Hazel, as well as his siblings, Katie, James and Rebecca, alongside grandparents, aunties, uncles and cousins who all loved him deeply.