Teen sailor's tragic death: Tributes paid to sailing star Jess

Teen sailor's tragic death: Tributes paid to sailing star Jess

Jess Eales in action alongside Olivier Greber

Jess Eales

First published in News
Last updated

TRIBUTES have poured in after the tragic death of a teenage girl who was one of Britain’s best young sailors.

Jess Eales was found dead aged 16 in New Forest woodland just weeks after representing her nation at a youth sailing championship in Portugal.

The news has rocked the sailing community in her hometown of Lymington and friends have spoken of their grief.

It came just weeks after she represented Great Britain at the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships in Tavira, Portugal, which she described as the “biggest week of her career”.

More than 365 of the world’s Olympic hopefuls from 63 nations competed in the sailing in the Algarve where Jess finished 11th.

In April she won a gold medal at the Royal Yachting Association Youth National Championships in Weymouth and Portland.

Her death has shocked friends and colleagues who have praised her character and talent.

Mark Nicholls, RYA youth racing manager who worked with Jess, said: “She was a young sailor who showed promising talent which can now unfortunately never be fulfilled. Our thoughts are with the family and friends at this sad and difficult time.”

She was also a member of Royal Lymington Yacht Club and club commodore Phil Lawrence added: “This is a tragedy and we are giving her parents all the time, space and privacy they need.”

Her achievements saw Jess included on the RLYC roll of honour earlier this year for the fourth time, following in the footsteps of Olympic champion sailor Sir Ben Ainslie.

Having learnt to sail in 2009, Jess went on to compete in the RS Feva XL class before moving into the high performance 29er skiff class.

The Brockenhurst College pupil spent a year competing in the double-handed 29er and then made the transition into the multi-hull catamaran Spitfire class. She was then among 10 Brits to compete in the championships in Portugal, and took part in the mixed multihull SL16 class alongside helm Oli Greber, a bronze medallist in the same event the previous year.

Jess was found near Shirley Holms Car Park in Sway at around 9.30am on Thursday, July 31. Police attended the scene and a spokesman confirmed the death is not being treated as suspicious.

Officers have passed on her file to the coroner and an inquest will be opened in due course.

Comments (12)

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9:33am Tue 5 Aug 14

Pomeroy says...

My heart goes out to the family. I lost a daughter 13 years ago and her family must be devastated
My heart goes out to the family. I lost a daughter 13 years ago and her family must be devastated Pomeroy
  • Score: 43

11:59am Tue 5 Aug 14

suzigirl says...

Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......
Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice....... suzigirl
  • Score: -21

12:32pm Tue 5 Aug 14

Pasiphae says...

So very sad, my thoughts are with all Jess's family and friends at this tragic time x
So very sad, my thoughts are with all Jess's family and friends at this tragic time x Pasiphae
  • Score: 26

1:17pm Tue 5 Aug 14

hamworthygirl says...

Pomeroy wrote:
My heart goes out to the family. I lost a daughter 13 years ago and her family must be devastated
Sorry for your loss pomeroy I cant imagine how awful that is, I have a daughter myself. Whatever the cause of this girls death its a great loss to her family my thoughts and prayers with them all.
[quote][p][bold]Pomeroy[/bold] wrote: My heart goes out to the family. I lost a daughter 13 years ago and her family must be devastated[/p][/quote]Sorry for your loss pomeroy I cant imagine how awful that is, I have a daughter myself. Whatever the cause of this girls death its a great loss to her family my thoughts and prayers with them all. hamworthygirl
  • Score: 25

4:57pm Tue 5 Aug 14

big Zeeee says...

suzigirl wrote:
Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......
How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!!
[quote][p][bold]suzigirl[/bold] wrote: Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......[/p][/quote]How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!! big Zeeee
  • Score: -36

4:57pm Tue 5 Aug 14

big Zeeee says...

suzigirl wrote:
Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......
How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!!
[quote][p][bold]suzigirl[/bold] wrote: Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......[/p][/quote]How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!! big Zeeee
  • Score: -26

6:01pm Tue 5 Aug 14

Avawhite says...

big Zeeee wrote:
suzigirl wrote:
Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......
How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!!
"How do you know it was tragic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!!"

I think you misunderstood what she meant by that....... A life is wasted as a girl with so much talent has gone from the world?.....

Anyone commenting is just trying to pay their respects to friends and family etc.
[quote][p][bold]big Zeeee[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]suzigirl[/bold] wrote: Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......[/p][/quote]How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!![/p][/quote]"How do you know it was tragic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!!" I think you misunderstood what she meant by that....... A life is wasted as a girl with so much talent has gone from the world?..... Anyone commenting is just trying to pay their respects to friends and family etc. Avawhite
  • Score: 15

7:16pm Tue 5 Aug 14

JemBmth says...

I wish the Echo would be a bit more careful where they put adverts.
I wish the Echo would be a bit more careful where they put adverts. JemBmth
  • Score: -3

9:20pm Tue 5 Aug 14

adspacebroker says...

What an absolute tragedy, a lovely very talented young lady that we had once met at RLYC but never knew. Words cannot truly express the sadness. God bless you, your family and friends.
What an absolute tragedy, a lovely very talented young lady that we had once met at RLYC but never knew. Words cannot truly express the sadness. God bless you, your family and friends. adspacebroker
  • Score: 5

10:55pm Tue 5 Aug 14

Letcommonsenseprevail says...

big Zeeee wrote:
suzigirl wrote:
Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......
How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!!
Very poor taste.
[quote][p][bold]big Zeeee[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]suzigirl[/bold] wrote: Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......[/p][/quote]How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!![/p][/quote]Very poor taste. Letcommonsenseprevail
  • Score: 7

7:31am Wed 6 Aug 14

JemBmth says...

JemBmth wrote:
I wish the Echo would be a bit more careful where they put adverts.
Why the thumbs down? Just now there was an ad for holidays,
[quote][p][bold]JemBmth[/bold] wrote: I wish the Echo would be a bit more careful where they put adverts.[/p][/quote]Why the thumbs down? Just now there was an ad for holidays, JemBmth
  • Score: -1

9:06am Wed 6 Aug 14

suzigirl says...

big Zeeee wrote:
suzigirl wrote: Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......
How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!!
It is tragic (one G) that a beautiful talented young woman has lost her life. I feel very sad IF this young woman ended her own life as my son died in a RTC six years ago with so much of his life ahead and he did not have a choice!
[quote][p][bold]big Zeeee[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]suzigirl[/bold] wrote: Another tragic waste of life - some young people don't get a choice.......[/p][/quote]How do you know it was traggic or a waste of a life!! Do you know how it happened? My guess is no! Were you there? My guess is no again!!!!![/p][/quote]It is tragic (one G) that a beautiful talented young woman has lost her life. I feel very sad IF this young woman ended her own life as my son died in a RTC six years ago with so much of his life ahead and he did not have a choice! suzigirl
  • Score: 4

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