MORE than 100 people turned out as a Tyne Valley community paid tribute to a popular 26-year-old man on Tuesday, August 4. 

Stu Sim was well known in Haydon Bridge, where he attended the village's two schools before becoming a farm worker at Langley for almost a decade. 

He died in tragic circumstances on Saturday, July 18, after being reported missing. It is understood he took his own life. 

On Tuesday morning, the doors of St Cuthbert's Church in Haydon Bridge opened for members of the community to pay their respects. 

Then at 12.50pm, the funeral cortege departed the Sim family home on Strother Close. It turned onto Church Street, which was lined with around 100 people. 

The cortege ventured over the bridge, and onto John Martin Street, where more residents had gathered, and applauded in honour of the 26-year-old, who almost embarked on a military career as a teenager. 

The procession made its way to Langley, and then onto Newcastle Crematorium, where a private cremation was set to take place. 

After leaving school at the age of 16, Stu started basic training at Winchester to become a Royal Engineer, but after passing the first stage of training, he was discharged on medical grounds. 

In the aftermath of Stu's death, his devastated family said he may have been battling against mental health issues.

His older brother Phil launched an online campaign to raise awareness, insisting that it was "ok not to be ok", and encouraged people to talk about their emotional struggles. 

Mental health charity Mind has reiterated it is available to provide support to anyone who may need it.