‘Our son will never meet his dad’: fiancée of crash victim tells of grief

PUBLISHED: 18:23 23 September 2020 | UPDATED: 12:44 24 September 2020

Craig Cooke with his fiancee Philippa Escott before he suffered fatal injuries when a friend lost control of his car and crashed into a tree  Picture: Supplied

Craig Cooke with his fiancee Philippa Escott before he suffered fatal injuries when a friend lost control of his car and crashed into a tree Picture: Supplied

Archant

A young mother is still coming to terms with her devastating loss two years after her fiancé was killed in a car crash.

Flowers left at the scene of the crash, at Castle Rising  Picture: Chris BishopFlowers left at the scene of the crash, at Castle Rising Picture: Chris Bishop

Craig Cooke from King’s Lynn was a passenger in a car being driven by his friend Andrew Carter when it collided with a tree in September 2018.

Laser assistant Mr Cooke, 27, was airlifted to hospital with a traumatic brain injury, 12 fractured ribs, lacerations to his left kidney and spleen and a broken arm.

He was put into an induced coma but he died from his injuries five days later.

His bride to be Phillipa Escott was six months pregnant with their first child, Henry. The couple had been together for around seven years, engaged for two months and had just bought their first house together.

Craig Cooke pictured with his fiancee Philippa Escott before the crash in which he suffered fatal injuries in September 2018  Picture: SuppliedCraig Cooke pictured with his fiancee Philippa Escott before the crash in which he suffered fatal injuries in September 2018 Picture: Supplied

Dental practice manager Miss Escott, 27, said: “We are all still struggling to come to terms with what happened. It’s almost impossible to comprehend how sudden it all was.

“One day our life was completely normal and we were decorating the nursery in preparation for the arrival of our baby, and the next Craig is no longer with us and our life is tragically different.

“I met Craig when I was 13. We started going out five years later and had been a couple ever since. We were looking forward to spending the rest of our lives together and it’s still so devastating to know that won’t happen.

“Even worse is that our son will never get to meet his dad but he’ll grow up knowing all about Craig and how much he would have adored him.”

Miss Escott said she hoped drivers would learn from her tragic case how easily lives could be destroyed by carelessness on the roads.

“Losing Craig is the hardest thing I have ever had to deal with, and I know that nothing will ever bring him back,” she said. “I’m so grateful for the support I’ve had in the last two years. It’s been such a difficult time and I wouldn’t want anyone else to go through the pain I have.”

Mr Carter, 30, of North Brink, Wisbech, pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving and was jailed for eight months when he appeared before Norwich Crown Court on May 1.

He said in court he had swerved to avoid a deer which had run into the road.

Miss Escott instructed law firm Irwin Mitchell, which has secured an undisclosed sum to help secure their son’s future.

Ruth Booy, partner at the firm, said: “The past few years have been incredibly difficult for Phillipa, and she understandably remains heartbroken after losing Craig, especially at a time when they should have been looking forward to having a baby.

“Through our work, we come across many families destroyed as a result of road accidents which are often avoidable. Phillipa now has to face a future without her partner, while her son will grow up without his father.

“We also hope that Phillipa’s experience will act as a warning to road users to take care at all times.”


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