The family of 17 year old Ian Gallagher have paid tribute to the selfless, loving student who died on New Year's Day following a road traffic collision.
Ian's parents, Alan and Andrea, his brother Phillip, sister, Beth, his grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins have been overwhelmed by the immense support from the student's friends and the local community.
Alan said: "The messages and the outpouring of support from the communities of Denbigh, Caerwys and Wrexham have been incredible, we have been so touched by the warmth of feeling from his many friends."
A former pupil of Denbigh High School, Ian was also well known in Caerwys, where his grandparents live.
Ian was well on his way to achieving his lifelong ambition of becoming a solider. For the past six months Ian had been a student at the Motivational Preparation College for Training (MPCT) in Wrexham and had started his application to join the Army.
Alan said: "In our eyes he was already a soldier, we are extremely proud of him and all that he achieved. Ian was never afraid to raise his head above the parapet and stand up for the right things. He cared deeply for his family and friends and always put others before himself."
Ian had a special place in his heart for the newest member of the Gallagher family, his nephew, nine month old Riley Jay.
Riley Jay's father, Phillip (Ian's brother) said: "Ian looked out for everyone. He loved Riley, the teddy bear he gave him for Christmas is a special present which we'll keep for him until he's older."
Alan and Andrea also paid tribute to all those who helped Ian following the collision which happened on the A541 Mold Road, Wrexham, during the early hours of New Year's Day.
Alan said: "The emergency services, the medical staff, those who were with him, we are deeply grateful for everything that they did for Ian, we cannot thank them enough."