YouTube vlogger Caleb Bratayley remembered in memorial service

hellomagazine.com

Some 50,000 fans across the world joined Caleb Bratayley's family in mourning during a memorial service streamed live on Facebook and Periscope. The YouTube sensation died aged 13 on Thursday from an "undetected medical condition" leaving followers who had watched him grow up through the family's touching home videos in shock.

From the meet & greet to the plane. Thanks to everyone that came out and and stood in line for hours. 😘 ❤️

Una foto publicada por Annie Hayley Caleb Bratayley (@officiallybratayley) el

His parents Katie and Billy explained that further tests would be needed to determine exactly why their son passed away but revealed that the family had a history of heart disease. The Braytayleys, whose real surname is LeBlanc, invited the internet community "to celebrate his life instead of focus on his death".

That's exactly what they did in a service which began with a montage of highlights from Caleb's life followed by tributes from his nearest and dearest. The bright funny youngster also had two sisters Annie, ten, and Hayley, seven. However, messages from his immediate family were not shown live.

Instead the congregation heard from friends and other relatives as they shared stories about his passions which included sushi and history. The popular vlogger once interviewed Republican presidential hopeful Cary Fiorina, as well as travelling to Hillary Clinton's campaign headquarters in Brooklyn to speak with supporters.

His cousin Paige spoke about his zest for life, saying: "Caleb knew how to light up a room, he was like a little brother to me, he loved life and he enjoyed every little bit even if it was things he didn't necessarily feel like doing he was a trooper."

Family friend Paula remembered the teenager's close bond with her daughter Sydney, describing their friendship as "very philosophical, emotional and deep".

"Unfortunately, the thought that Sydney and Caleb would end up together is not happening anymore," she said through tears. "I do hope and pray for my daughter that the relationship you have with your future mate is one-eighth as emotionally tied as yours was with Caleb."

His baseball coach said the word he would use to describe his student was "exemplary", adding: "He was a great teammate. Caleb will always be on my roster".

Any guesses what this is a picture of? You'll find out tomorrow! Right @presshandstands @iamabakedpotato ?

Una foto publicada por Annie Hayley Caleb Bratayley (@officiallybratayley) el

Since starting their videos in 2010, the family have gained 1.3 million subscribers and had a billion views.

Caleb's mother announced the news of his death on Monday. Referring to her son by his nickname of "baked potato", she said the family would miss the "incredibly funny, loving and wonderful spirit (that) made us all fall in love with him as a YouTuber, friend, brother and son".

In a video made the day before he passed away but posted afterwards, the youngster is seen joking around with his sisters.

Caleb Bratayley's family had shared his life with YouTube since 2010

A message on the screen said: "It is with our deepest sorrow to report that the Instagram announcement was indeed true.

"In addition to our desire to give the Internet community the chance to begin the grieving process, we also wanted to post this video to show a healthy and happy Caleb doing what he loved.

"Thank you for all the love and support that everyone has shown our family. And we ask for continued love and support as we move through the grieving process."

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