A service for popular teen Lukas Whibley has been set to be held at the Parksville Community and Conference Centre (PCCC) on August 17 at 2 p.m.
Whibley has been described as the most caring, funny and generous friend in the world and his death has sent shock waves through the community.
Born in Whitehorse, Yukon on November 8, 1995, Whibley and his family moved to in Coombs in 2002. They quickly became in integral part of the tight-knit community.
Although Whibley went to elementary school in Errington and high school in Parksville, the 17-year-old’s tragic death has impacted a world of people across the area and many of them will be attending the gathering on Saturday to tell their stories about the young man whose life ended far too soon.
It is a loss that doesn’t make sense and for friends and classmates of Whibley — most of them teenagers and young adults — they are facing a massive gap between the way they believe the world should be, with their friend alive, and the way their world is now.
His friends, who recently gathered to celebrate their graduation this year at the PCCC, will now get together in the same building to shed tears and pay their respects to their much missed pal.
One of those grieving youths will be Katie Wall who had been friends with Whibley for a long time.
Wall has been helping the family gather photos from his friends which will be used for the service on Saturday, a task she has handled with courage because she says it is what her good friend would have wanted.
She said his death has hit her and everyone who knew him hard but she and the others he has left behind are finding comfort in each other.
“It was a huge tragedy to lose him but we have been there for each other and that has helped a lot. Everyone is being supportive of each other and we will work through this together … Lukas would have wanted that,” she said.
Wall said she first met Lukas in Grade 4 and they became instant friends.
“We were eight years old and we were in the same class. We lived down the road from each other and have always been friends.”
She admitted to sharing her first kiss with Whibley and even calling him her boyfriend in Grade 5.
Wall said aside from being friendly, smart and athletic, there was something extra special about her friend that she and everybody else who knew him were fortunate to experience. “His personality was different. He was straight up with people. He was really easy to talk to … I could talk to him about anything and he would always make you think positively and bring up your mood when you were feeling low,” she said.
Wall also spent time with Whibley on the football field. She was one of the managers of the Ballenas Whalers Football team and said he was a great athlete who was a stand up guy on the field.
“He was always straight forward and really supportive.”
She said there was a reason he was the captain on his lacrosse team and he will be remembered as a dear friend by everyone who knew him.
For classmates and friends struggling with Whibley’s sudden death, there is a youth grief counsellor free of charge for anyone who needs any help in dealing with this or to simply talk. Call 250-954-2277.
A facebook tribute from friends
Rest in peace Lukas Whibley I love you man. One of the most honorable, fair and skilled lacrosse players I’ve ever met. It was an honour to have played with you and have won the Provincials in 2010. I’ll be holding on to that gold medal right above my heart.
RIP Whibs, gonna miss you buddy, you were a great lacrosse player, loyal teammate and a friend that I’ll always remember. Can’t believe this happened to one of the sweetest kids I know, love you wibbles and I’ll never forget how you made every practice a good one.
One of the most beautiful souls will now be looking over us. Rest in Peace Lucas, you were a great friend and teammate, I’m glad to have met you.
My condolences to the family of Lukas Whibley. You were an awesome person. You truly were one of the reasons I volunteer my time to coach. RIP Lukas…Parksville Sharks Lacrosse.
Love you buddy! Had some of the best times in my life with you. You will always mean everything to me… I’ll also never forget you! You were the best man I could ever have as a friend! I will see you again one day Lukas!! Yours truly from the bottom of my heart.