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Widow of Sussex farmer who died in crash warns of drink driving dangers
Sussex farmer Nicola Thomas had it all – a loving husband, three beautiful children and a successful family business.
But on December 29 last year husband Glyn took the car to the pub for Christmas drinks with his pals.
Hours later, after getting behind the wheel drunk, he was dead.
The 38-year-old crashed on his way back to Holmansbridge Farm, near Cooksbridge, between Deadmantree Hill and Barcombe Cross.
Mrs Thomas, 38, described her partner as a “kind”, “gentle” and “loving” man. She said: “A year ago my life was perfect.
“The day before he died we had been to the panto in Eastbourne. We had a super time and I put the children to bed while Glyn went to lock up.
“We had such a great Christmas and everyone was on a bit of a high. Hours later he was dead and his body was back in Eastbourne at the coroners.
“I just hope people reading this will think twice before drinking and driving this Christmas. You never think it is going to be you but neither did Glyn.”
The Thomas family has run Holmansbridge Farm for three generations. Christmas is their busiest time of the year with people travelling for miles to buy their turkeys.
Mrs Thomas added: “He had turned the business around and was well-known in the village. He was everyone’s problem solver.
“He was great with the children and had a real twinkle in his eye.”
Recounting the horrifying moment police broke the news, she said: “The children were still asleep upstairs. I dreaded them waking up. It was awful.
“The youngest didn’t understand and will now never remember his dad.
“It’s hard to find words to describe that day or the ones that followed. They were full of emptiness and shock, like it wasn’t real.
“The Christmas decorations were still up and I had to take them down. I was already dreading having to get them out again the next year.”
She added: “I can only hope things will get better after we have got through Christmas and the anniversary of Glyn’s death.
“Life has changed, we were so happy and such a strong family but losing Glyn has taken that away. It makes you wonder what you have done to deserve it. He was such a great person but he did a very stupid thing.”
Sussex Police is stepping up the drink-driving campaign this Christmas. You can text police on 65999 with the details of people drink or drug driving, report them via www.operationcrackdown.co.uk or call 999.
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