On 3 May 1998, a knock at Jane’s front door would change her, and her family’s lives forever. The knock came from a police officer, who informed her that her son Gareth, aged 19, had been killed by a drink driver. The crash occurred when Gareth was walking home after a night out with friends. The driver of the car that hit Gareth was an 18-year-old called Mark Snewin, who was Gareth’s best friend. It was found that Snewin had been driving his car while two and a half times over the limit at the time of the crash.

After the knock at the door, Jane recounts the feelings of helplessness that came along with the immediate trauma and grief of the news. For everybody else, life just carried on as normal while Jane’s was a blur. One moment Gareth was there, the next he was gone. This was incredibly difficult for her to reconcile. She immediately saw details of the crash appear on the news. This made the grieving process much harder for Jane and her family.

On 3 May 1998, a knock at our door changed our lives forever. When the news came through, I felt hopeless. I did not have the chance to say simple things such as ‘I love you,’ or ‘Goodbye.’ I miss the everyday conversations I had with Gareth. This feeling is as fresh today, as it was then. This is why I am sharing Gareth’s story.

Twenty-four years after the crash, the death of her son is as fresh in Jane’s mind now, as it was then. Not a day goes by where she does not think about Gareth, the sort of life he would be leading, or if he would have been married and had kids.

In the years since the crash, Jane has also thrown herself into raising money for Brake, raising awareness of the impacts of drink driving as well as the importance of keeping safe on our roads. She has been a longstanding volunteer for the charity for many years and wishes to continue for as long as she can. Every pound of money she is able to raise, charity event she is able to speak at, or campaign she involves herself in, is done in memory of Gareth. Jane wants to make sure that everybody understands the importance of road safety by sharing Gareth’s story.