A YEAR on from his stabbing, friends, family and loved ones have shared their memories of the “larger than life” Dean Evans.

In celebration of his life, friends gathered for a charity night to remember his spirit on the anniversary of his death.

The 31-year-old, from Kempshott, died after being stabbed on April 8, 2016.

A 20-year-old man was sentenced to 11 years for manslaughter in October.

The event, organised by his sister Sam Evans and friends Keith Longman and Eleanor Frances, was set up to raise funds for Sebastian’s Action Trust as well as creating a party atmosphere to commemorate Dean.

Mr Longman said: “It was a really positive event, we didn’t want it to be doom and gloom at all.”

After his death last year, a floral tribute was laid in Benham Road, Popley.

And one year on from the incident, a group of Dean’s friends have shared their memories of the man “with a great sense of humour” with The Gazette.

School friend Ali Brown, 32, said: “He was a larger than life character, he just had an infectious personality and sense of humour that you couldn’t help but laugh when you were around him. When we were kids we always used to mess around every day. When the ice cream van came around he would go up and ask if it was serving hot dogs and burgers.”

Bobbie Read, 26, said: “If I was feeling down even my mum would call him and say that I wouldn’t speak to anyone and he would be round within minutes. And it wouldn’t take long for him to put a smile on my face. If you were around Dean you would always be laughing.”

According to friends, Dean was always pulling pranks and getting up to mischief.

Miss Read added: “You couldn’t help but laugh at him because that’s just how Dean was and I couldn’t ever be mad or annoyed at him.”

Danielle Brawley, 27, said: “When I met him he didn’t have much hair even though people used to call him curly. So I got a tattoo on my chest saying ‘In there with big hair’ which was our little quote and that is something I will always have to remember him by.”

Jess Wearne, 24, added: “He was a real social animal and had lots of groups of really close friends, who since his death have all started talking to each other. It’s strange as it doesn’t feel like he’s gone because we still talk about him every day.”

Emily Traynor, 26, said: “I remember these was one time when he put a rubber glove on his head like a chicken, that is the image which will forever stay with me.”

The charity event held at Viables on April 8 raised more than £5,000 for the charity with raffle prizes, an auction and donations all part of the evening.

Prizes included laptops and a signed England rugby shirt. Mr Longman added: “It was a night in keeping with what Dean was like, upbeat and positive.”