Father’s tribute to daugher who died in “freak and tragic crash”

Sarah Roe
Sarah Roe

The father of a 32-year-old woman from Northampton who died in a “freak and tragic” car crash, said she was a wonderful daughter who was a blessing to her family.

Sarah Roe, of West Hunsbury, was driving her Fiat Punto along Welsh Lane, near Syresham, on March 18 last year when her vehicle hit a patch of ice, spun and crashed into a concrete bollard in a lay-by on the opposite side of the road.

An inquest at County Hall on Wednesday heard that another vehicle then skidded on the same patch of ice and crashed into her car.

Ms Roe had been standing outside her vehicle with the driver’s door open talking on her mobile telephone and she suffered fatal injuries after she was crushed against a metal telegraph pole wire.

The inquest heard evidence from a number of drivers who had also briefly lost control of their vehicles on the patch of ice near to a bend in the road, shortly before Ms Roe crashed.

Evidence was given from Nathan Stowe, an experienced driver who travels 25,000 miles a year, said he felt the wheels of his car lose traction on the bend and narrowly avoided skidding into Ms Roe’s car, after he locked his steering in the opposite direction.

Mr Stowe said the road was in the “worst condition he had ever experienced” and he was lucky to avoid crashing into Ms Roe’s vehicle.

Cornelius Doyle, the driver of the car that collided with Ms Roe’s vehicle, said he was about 25 metres away from Ms Roe’s vehicle when he skidded on the ice and lost control of his vehicle.

Pc Andrew Jeavons, collision investigator, said it appeared to be a “totally freak and tragic accident”.

David Roe, Sarah’s father, said his daughter was “the most wonderful that anyone could have hoped to have known”. He said: “What she was able to cram into her life would put most 80-year-olds to shame. We feel so blessed to have shared Sarah’s life.”

County Coroner Anne Pember recorded a verdict of accidental death.

Sarah Roe grew up in Northampton and worked as human resources manager at the Morrisons store in Kettering Road before taking up the same position at the supermarket in Banbury.

Ms Roe’s father, David Roe, told the inquest his daughter loved running and baking and was always making cakes for family members.

He said: “She had a great capacity to love and care for people, always putting their troubles, hopes and dreams before her own. If there was a problem to be shared she would halve it with comforting words, a hug or by cheering us all up in that special way only Sarah knew how. It has never seemed more fitting to say that it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. We will think of her in the fondest way every time we dance, sing or bake.”