THE mother of tragic Kilwinning teen Craig Kirkwood has spoken of the family’s heartache nine months after losing her husband to cancer.

On what would have been Craig’s 25th birthday today (Tuesday, May 29), Alison Kirkwood spoke of her beloved son and heroic husband Colin, who passed away in August after battling cancer.

The 51-year-old had tirelessly raised more than £100,000 for various charities after the couple’s son was mowed down and killed in June 2010 after a disturbance at Irvine Beach Park.

The 17-year-old Rangers fan died after suffering serious internal injuries after Martin Stewart, 25, drove into him near Irvine Beach. He was jailed for more than five years.

Following on from his senseless death Colin and Alison organised an annual charity run from Craig’s beloved Ibrox to Kilwinning Sports Club where he played for KSC Whitehirst.

The run was also followed by the Craig Kirkwood Cup - an annual charity football match involving players, friends and family to remember the well-loved teenager. 

But before his heartbreaking death in August Colin made Alison, son David and daughter Sarah promise to carry the annual event on in Craig’s name.

And this weekend Alison’s hard work paid off when KSC Whitehirst went head to head with Craig’s Select for the Craig Kirkwood Cup, with the latter taking home the trophy after winning 5-0.

Alison said: “It was a fabulous day. Really great. Colin would have been delighted, I think. We were a bit nervous about how well it was going to go because it was Colin who usually done all the hard work and he was great at making sure everything was just right so we just hoped we could do him and Craig proud.”

Before kick off the players took part in a balloon release, which happens every year for Craig, but this year held special significance.

Alison said: “This year we released 25 balloons to mark what would have been Craig’s 25th birthday, but the balloons this year were for both Craig and Colin, who were both young men with everything ahead of them. 

“All our friends and family have been there for us and helped make this happen. We just couldn’t do it without them”