CO-OP staff in Dunfermline have helped raise thousands of pounds by walking in memory of a much-loved colleague who died last month.

Stephen Lyon, aged 21, worked at his local Kinross store but had also previously worked in the shops in Crossford and Linburn Road in Dunfermline, where he was popular with customers and colleagues alike.

His death came as a huge shock to both the community and Co-op staff who described him as a “happy and sociable” young man.

Leanne Rice, store manager for the Co-op on Townhill Road, organised a superhero walk, for the Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH), charity around Loch Leven on Sunday where around 40 colleagues participated to honour their late friend.

She said: “There were quite a few stores Stephen worked on in the West Fife area.

“His manager, Claire Cotterill, said he was very much loved by all of his colleagues and built some very strong friendships with them.

“They had no indication that he was in any distress and was struggling with his mental health, along with his family and friends, so his passing was a complete shock to all of us.

“Our charity partner is SAMH so it was given that we were going to do something and the Co-op in Kinross have also raised some extra money for Stephen’s family.

“Stephen was such a lovely guy, just like his family, and they came along to the walk too and were just so upbeat.

“As we were dressed up as superheroes we got a really great response from the public.”

Stephen died on June 5 and his mum Jackie is already in the process of setting up a service for young people who need help.

She told the Press: “Going through this bereavement of my son due to suicide I found there was no support in the local area for young people experiencing suicidal thoughts or for their families.

“If there is any support it is in Dundee and Perth.

“We just decided as a family we needed to do something about this even if we can prevent one more person losing their life.

“Stephen showed no signs that he was struggling with his mental health –he just went for a walk and never came back. He had many many friends and socialising with them played a very important part in his life.

"He worked hard at a job he loved and was well-liked by his customers, young and old.

"It was out of the blue for us because he seemed so happy but obviously not for him.

“The staff at the Co-op have been so supportive – they’ve handed us a cheque which means we can secure somewhere for our premises.

“The walk at the weekend was just unbelievable and just phenomenal what they’ve done to help.”

Jackie hopes that SL Support Service will be up and running in October and it already has a board of trustees and a group of volunteers ready to help.

With the volunteers and two paid support workers, the public will be able to ring a phone line for the service or send a text message and receive video call support – they will also signpost to other services.

“We’ve done a lot in a short period of time but it’s given me something to do and I had to do something," Jackie said.

“I’m determined that my son’s death is not just another statistic. His life meant something and I don’t want anyone else to do this so any free time I’ve had I’ve been researching.

“If we can do anything that is going to prevent a young person feeling like they’ve got nowhere to turn then that’s what we’ll try to do.”