A friend of celebrity boxing coach Reece Newcombe who was killed in west London says his unborn baby is “never going to know” their father.
Mr Newcombe’s partner announced that she was expecting the couple’s second child at his funeral on Saturday, but Mr Newcombe never got to hear the news.
The would-be father of two was stabbed to death with a piece of glass on Richmond Bridge on November 26. Ross Hamilton, 32, has been charged with his murder.
The boxing coach, who trained celebrities including former footballer Ian Wright, had a seven-month daughter at the time of his death.
“He didn’t even get to see her first birthday. He didn’t get to see her walk,” friend Jamie Dobson, who has set up a GoFundMe page for the children, told the Standard.
“She says ‘Dadda’ now, he didn’t get to see that. It’s heartbreaking.”
The couple’s second child is due mid 2023. The news was a shock, Mr Dobson said.
“We did a memorial walk for him a couple of weeks ago now, and [his partner] found out on the memorial walk. It was made public at the funeral.
“It’s like the last gift,” he explained.
“They both didn’t know. [His parter] is absolutely broken, but maybe this will help her. She’s happy...it’s another thing that lives on that’s a part of him.”
Mr Dobson said that Reece was not aware of the pregnancy, and neither was his partner until few weeks ago.
“It’s sad that they’re never going to know [their dad]. They’ve been robbed of their dad.”
A funeral was held for Mr Newcombe on Saturday January 21.
More than 2,500 attended, including some of Mr Newcombe’s celebrity clients and friends, such as former fotballer Ian Wright, actor Jack O’Connoll, and former boxer John Conteh.
Mr Dobson, who carried his friend’s casket, said Mr Newcombe was well known in the community and helped with several charitable boxing events.
Mr Newcombe’s father spoke at the funeral, attended by 180 people in the chapel at South West Middlesex Crematorium, while others gathered outside to watch on a screen.
A day later, a baby scan was added to the GoFundMe page, with the caption: “Misse’s brother or sister x”.
The page has raisied more than £126,000 for Mr Newcombe’s family in less than two months.
“Hopefully it gives them the best start. Hopefully a bright future, becuase they haven’t got a father to do that,” Mr Dobson said.
“I just pray the two little [children] grow up and can be happy.”
Mr Dobson said his friend’s death feels like it was yesterday.
“He hasn’t died, he’s been murdered. He’s been stolen from us and there’s a big difference. You shouldn’t be having a funeral at that age for that kind of thing. There’s a reason why this has happened.”
Mr Dobson said he was out with Mr Newcombe in Richmond on the night he died.
“It was me and him that had gone out together but I came home early. I kind of wish I didn’t now.
“I came home early and [was] woken up to the news in the morning. I rushed to the hospital and it all went downhill from there.”
Mr Newcombe’s father John Holland said the family is trying to move forward after “devestating loss” and his son’s death has left “such a deep void”.
“Reece was very much the beating heart of our family, just as he was the beating heart of... West London and both our family and the local area will never be the same without him,” he wrote on social media.