MONEY is being raised for a young family to help support it following a car crash which killed a man earlier this year.

Matt Hammonds, 25, died in tragic circumstances after the crash in Witney in July.

Now, a family friend has launched a fundraiser in the hope enough money will be raised to have a memorial bench put in at a favourite spot of the family’s.

Mr Hammonds’ fiancé Lottie McCudden has known Emily Shepherd since primary school, with Miss Shepherd seeking to help her long-term friend as the family continues to heal.

Read again: Family tribute to Matt Hammonds who died in Witney crash

Miss Shepherd, a teaching assistant at Abingdon & Witney College, said: “Three beautiful children have been left behind so I wanted to fund a memorial bench for them near Cogges or Stanton Harcourt.

“I’ve been a friend of Lottie’s since primary school and I was a good friend to her when her dad passed away.

“When Matt passed away, it really broke my heart.

“What happened really hit home, I’m a young mum and it’s just really horrible.

Oxford Mail:

“Lottie can spend the money on whatever she wants, whether she takes the kids away somewhere, but she can use this to help support the kids too.

“Lottie is coping amazingly with it, the kids have really kept her going and she’s being very strong.”

Mr Hammonds, a base maintenance engineer at AirTanker in Carterton, moved to the town from Doncaster when he was a young child as his father was in the RAF.

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Miss McCudden told this paper how much the memorial bench would mean to her and her family.

She said: “I would want to put the bench at Dix Pit lake in Stanton Harcourt as it’s where we spent a lot of time walking the family dog with the children, it would mean the world to me.

“I lost my dad at the age of 11 and having a place to go, sit and reminisce in peace was so helpful.

“It will mean a lot to the family, especially the children as I know how much having that special place means and helps you when going through the years without a parent.

“At the moment, the only place we have to go is the scene of the accident, which of course is very upsetting.

Oxford Mail:

“I’ve tried my best to make it as nice as possible but it’s not ideal for the children to be there.

“To have somewhere else to go that doesn’t also have that horrible link would be wonderful.”

Mr Hammonds, a former Burford School pupil, died following a crash in Thorney Leys on July 11 at about 9.40pm.

Thames Valley Police said a white Ford Transit Connect left the carriageway and crashed into some trees and bushes near the B&Q store.

Paramedics attended the incident but sadly Mr Hammonds was pronounced dead at the scene.

A second man received treatment at hospital and was kept in for observation, but his injuries were not believed to be serious.

To donate to the fundraiser, which has so far raised over £400, please visit: