Former Great Britain cyclist Ray Eden, killed in March last year after intervening in a dispute between neighbours, has been commemorated by having a boat named in his honour by Doncaster Rowing Club, where he pursued his other sporting passion. The boat, called ‘The Raging Eden’ to reflect his strong rowing style, was bought with money raised from a collection at his funeral, reports the Doncaster Free Press.
Eden had belonged to the club for eight years, and his wife Gail and 13-year-old son Finn, himself a promising rower (pictured above in another boat), attended the naming ceremony at Doncaster Rowing Club in Hexthorpe Park, with Finn himself taking the boat out on the water for its maiden voyage.
Mrs Eden told the newspaper: “I think this will be a boost for the club and for myself and Finn. Ray gave so much to rowing, and they used to refer to him as the Raging Eden, so this is a really lovely tribute to him.”
Doncaster Rowing Club captain Adam Manson added: “It was a really emotional day and really overwhelming. Ray was such a big part of the club. I’m sure Ray will have been looking down on us and he would think that it’s fantastic that is his name will remain in the club forever.
“He would also be extremely proud of his son Finn who is a fantastic rower and doing so well. We used to call Ray Raging Eden when he was competing because that’s the way he rowed, full of power and strength, and this boat is a fitting tribute to him.”
At the time of his death, aged 42, Eden was working for Doncaster-based Planet-X. It was working as a cycle courier in London during the 1980s that led to him developing a passion for cycling.
He would go on to become the national 100-mile time trial champion and would also represent Great Britain, although injury kept him out of the Olympics in Atlanta in 1996.
He died after being punched by neigbour and former boxer Luke Jolly, aged 24, who had been arguing in the street with his girlfriend. Last August, Jolly was jailed for four years and nine months after pleading guilty to manslaughter.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.