Croydon poet laureate Shaniqua Benjamin and Elliott-Jay Munroop pay tribute to their close friend Charles Bachoir who tragically died at the age of 18. 

On 5th January 2021, Thornton Heath, Peru, and the world lost a very special individual in Charles Bachoir. 

Peru born, but Croydon based, Charles was a creative and fitness enthusiast who loved all things photography, football and fashion. His warm smile, comforting words and gentle approach made him stand out in an area where not many people can relate. 

Charles spread love and joy wherever he went, never failing to make friends and seamlessly integrate himself into various groups, without losing himself in the process. 

You could guarantee that he would always be unapologetically Charles, whether that was at Oasis Academy Shirley Park, Croydon College or sports clubs. 

We had the blessing of meeting him at our local church, Croydon Seventh Day Adventist Church in Selhurst, where you’d regularly find him in the company of those older than him – he soaked up wisdom but also had plenty of wisdom to give. 

Charles was just 18 when he was taken from us, due to complications caused by haemophilia, a rare condition that affects the blood’s ability to clot. 

In spite of his health struggles, including problems with his liver, Charles never complained and lived life to its fullest, making the most of every opportunity. He was always up for trying something new and having something to do.

Charles left behind an abundance of memories, which will leave us laughing and smiling. He will be forever remembered, especially through his lasting legacy of loving others, staying curious, and making the most of life. Long live the cool kid.

A fund has so far raised almost £12,000 of the £15,000 goal towards the funeral costs, a memorial  and  tribute in June on Charles’s birthday.