THE mother and girlfriend of a teenager who died tragically have shaved their hair off to pay for his funeral.
Ben Bennett was found dead in bed at his home in Wymering last month.
The 19-year-old is believed to have taken an overdose of medication he was taking for depression and mental health issues.
With the cost of his funeral expected to be more than £3,500, devastated mum Maria, his girlfriend Shanice Honess and friend David Sawyer are raising the money through sponsored events.
Yesterday’s head shave at Zoom in Leigh Park, was particularly poignant for Mrs Bennett, 45, a mum of five.
She said: ‘Ben and I always said we wanted to do a head shave for charity.
‘We were going to do one before to help a little girl come over from America to get treatment.
‘The funeral is very expensive so we are doing what we can to raise the money to pay for it.
‘It’s nerve-wracking but it’s worth it.’
Miss Honess, 22, was Ben’s girlfriend, on and off, for nine months.
She also had her long red hair shaved.
She said: ‘Ben helped so many people. He did a lot of work with charities and would help anyone.
‘If he could see us now he would be laughing at us.
‘We always said we would do it for charity.
‘And now we’re doing it for him.’
Mr Sawyer volunteered to have his hair cut off in memory of his friend.
He said: ‘It was a spur of the moment decision but I wanted to help.’
In the evening there was a medium event at the Painters Arms pub, in Lake Road.
Ben used to work at The Old Vic pub in Southsea, but his mental state started to go downhill after losing the job several months ago.
Ben’s funeral takes place at 4pm at Havant Crematorium on April 15.
An inquest is due to take place into Ben’s death in August.
To contribute to Ben’s funeral you can donate at gofundme.com/pbm2xg.