Elanor's Story

March 2024

Elanor was pregnant with their daughter when her partner Robin was killed in a road traffic collision. She shares her story and how the support she found following his death helped her...

"On 7th October 2005, my last day at work before maternity leave, I arrived home late to an empty flat.  I’d already been worried that texts to my partner hadn’t been answered, and I knew something was wrong and could feel the panic rising.  Only 4 months before my natural mother had been killed in a freak car accident and I was already paranoid! 

It wasn’t long before there was a knock at the door – a policeman.  He was young, and hadn’t expected me to be as pregnant as I was.  I was already crying as I opened the door and he told me the news that my partner had died in a motorbike crash on his commute home from work.  He was very patient as I removed already smeared make up, tried to call Robin’s mum, called my parents who would go to St Thomas’ to meet me and finally went with him to be taken to the hospital.  Not long into the journey the traffic built and he put on his siren and we drove so fast up to St Thomas’ through London evening traffic.

I was getting more and more distressed and the young policeman was more than happy to hand me over to the nurse who met us as we got to the hospital.  I was practically hyperventilating at this point.  The nurse was lovely – everyone was – she said they had guessed I was pregnant as there was a scan photo in Robin’s wallet, but didn’t know how pregnant.  She took me to a quiet room and got me water.  My parents arrived at some point after this – I was so glad to have them there, but I wanted to go and see Robin on my own. 

The kind nurse (she was also a biker but I can’t remember her name now) took me through to sit with Robin.

"It was truly the worst and most sad moment of my life before and since. Still gets me now after all this time!"

Another policeman came to ask me some questions and explain what would happen now.  The nurse told me what had happened – a woman stepped out from behind a bus into Robin’s path, he swerved to avoid hitting her and lost control of his bike crashing into a post office van coming the other way.  He hit the van with a force that cracked his helmet, and ultimately killed him.  The woman was never found. 

He looked so normal and at peace except for the tubes that were still in his mouth.  I didn’t want to leave him.  I think I’d been in there about an hour when the nurse gently suggested it was time. 

"All I could do was give him one last kiss on the forehead and go."

Our daughter was born 18 days later – 5 days after the funeral.  

Being part of WAY and meeting people in a similar situation has helped with the healing process.  Time does help too, but that will still always be the worst and saddest day of my life.  No chance to say goodbye, and he never got to meet his daughter. 

I’ve often asked the universe why be so cruel – but of course there is no answer.  Things happen and thank goodness there are good people around to support us afterwards."

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