Popular Sidbury lad Jordan’s final journey

Tractor-mad teen taken to cemetery on dream gift

A TEENAGER made his ‘final journey’ aboard a dream tractor he received as a Christmas present just days before he died.

Popular Sidmouth College student Jordan Cross, 18, who had a rare muscle wasting disease, was carried to the cemetery on his beloved International 276 before being laid to rest.

Family and friends had worked flat out to restore the gift so the tractor-mad teenager could receive it on what turned out to be his last Christmas Day.

Jordan, who suffered from Duchenne muscular dystrophy, died after being taken ill suddenly on December 30.

Around 400 people attended his funeral service at Sidbury Church last Friday.

“It was fitting that we took Jordan to the cemetery on the tractor,” said his dad, Rodney, 44.

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“His dream was to buy his own - they were always his passion.”

Jordan’s family this week paid tribute to “an absolute star” who never complained about an illness that left him in an electric powered wheelchair – and who a village took to their hearts.

“We didn’t realise how many people he’d touched along the way,” said Rodney, of Greenhead, Sidbury.

“The village united for him. To see so many people come together was absolutely amazing. Without all the support, things would have been so much harder.”

A family friend had fixed-up a Massey 65 tractor for Jordan to enjoy – but he always wanted his own.

The youngster asked for money for his 18th birthday to buy one, and saved enough to land the International in June.

The vehicle took months to restore.

“It was finished for him on Christmas Day,” said Rodney.

“For some reason something made me feel we just had to get it done by then - and we did. It really perked him up, he was chuffed.”

Rodney, wife Rachel, 38, and Jordan’s sisters Chelsea, 17, and Megan, 15, brother Bailey, nine, and grandparents Lynda and Maurice Clapp described him as a “cheeky but lovely” lad who “always had a smile”.

“Girls loved him to bits,” they added.

“We’ve been so lucky for the time we had, and people have helped us all the way through,” added Rodney.

“It was an honour for us to do what we did for Jordan. We were blessed with him.

“He said his goodbyes to us. I think he decided it was his time.”