Mum of crash victim Lauren Danks says it is 'an honour' to become charity ambassador
PUBLISHED: 13:35 01 February 2019
The mum of a young woman whose death was caused by a Suffolk drink-driver has become an ambassador for a charity that has given her family crucial support.
Claire Danks, 45, is helping to raise awareness of the Road Victims Trust, which came to the family’s need following the death of Lauren, 22, in a crash on the A11 at Barton Mills in November 2016.
Lauren, a senior beauty therapist, had been travelling home from her first evening shift at Center Parcs, Elveden.
The driver of the other vehicle, Nelson Curtis, from Lakenheath, was more than twice the drink-drive limit and travelling at 124mph. He was jailed for his reckless actions.
Mrs Danks, who is also mum to three boys, said it was “an honour” to have been approached by the trust, which continues to support her family, from Soham, with counselling.
She said: “They have been a huge support to us. It’s something positive we can give back to them and hopefully their support will go on to help families just like us really.”
Mrs Danks, who is married to Robert, said she had never heard of the Road Victims Trust until their police liaison officer got them in contact.
The trust supports those in Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire who have been affected by fatal road collisions.
Initially, Mrs Danks said she was sceptical of the counselling as it ‘couldn’t bring my daughter back’, but as time has gone on it has helped.
“She [the counsellor] has given us the tools to be able to function again as a family and help to rebuild what we have.
“I always look at it like ‘okay, it’s not the path we wanted, but this is what we have’.”
More than two years on from Lauren’s death, “emotionally it never gets any easier,” Mrs Danks said.
But she said they wanted to carry on, laugh and enjoy special times still as a family.
“Lauren loved her life and her glass was always half full, never half empty, and I just want my three boys to be able - despite what has happened and what has been taken away from us - to enjoy life the way she did and have the same opportunities she did.”
She said the support had helped them to respect each other’s individual ways of grieving, but also to know it is okay to enjoy themselves together.
Family and friends have also given back to the Road Victims Trust through fundraising activities, which Mrs Danks said provided a focus.
For more information about the Road Victims Trust see here.