‘What an honour’ - Kiyan Prince’s father Mark hopes QPR’s renamed stadium can boost support for foundation
PUBLISHED: 12:30 12 August 2019
Mark Prince speaks about the official opening of QPR’s Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium.
Mark Prince said that addressing QPR supporters at the club's first home league game since the renaming of their stadium after his son Kiyan was a 'difficult but wonderful' moment.
Former QPR youth player Kiyan Prince was stabbed to death in 2006 at the age of 15 when he was trying to break up a fight.
His father set up the Kiyan Prince Foundation in his memory, which aims to educate young people into the impacts of knife crime.
R's supporters voted overwhelmingly for Loftus Road to be renamed after the foundation when given the choice of five charities earlier this year.
Speaking after QPR's 1-1 draw with Huddersfield, Prince said: "It was absolutely insane.
"You never get away from the grief and the pain - it just lies underneath the surface. As we stood out there, we realised that this was a different moment.
"To come back here however many years later and due to the vision, the focus and the planning, it's created a different result which ended in Kiyan's name being above the stadium which developed him and trained his skills.
"What an honour. I haven't seen Tracy smile like that or show those kind of joyful emotions since Kiyan was murdered, so to see that coming out of her spirit was a great moment for me.
"It was very emotional and I broke down out there. It was difficult but wonderful at the same time.
"It lays testament to not just the work that we've been doing all these years without giving up, fully committed, and improving all the time but also to the character of a wonderful, young 15-year-old boy."
While the renaming of the stadium is a huge boost for the foundation's publicity, Prince hopes that it can lead to more support as they continue to spread their important message.
He added: "Above all, I'm calling out for companies, sponsors and people who care about this and that have the capital and revenue to support this to allow us to get around to get this message out.
"We have a road show that we will be running called Inspiring Future Champions touring throughout all UK schools.
"We have such a powerful message for children which has been evaluated by an independent university to see how it works.
"Why don't we focus on the positives and create positivity? That's why I haven't mentioned anything to do with knife crime in the name of the road show.
"People like Kiyan come about rarely and you have to honour that - it doesn't matter about their age."
- To support the Kiyan Prince Foundation, visit http://www.thekpf.com/
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