Tributes to wife killed in crash pile up

A HEARTBROKEN husband has paid tribute to his wife who was killed in a horrific four-car road crash just hours before they were due to jet-off for a dream holiday.

A HEARTBROKEN husband has paid tribute to his wife who was killed in a horrific four-car road crash just hours before they were due to jet-off for a dream holiday.

Ralph and Brenda Crawshaw, of Glemsford, near Sudbury, were travelling by taxi to Stansted Airport to fly to Sicily, when tragedy struck early on Saturday morning.

The Toyota Carina taxi they where travelling in was involved in a multiple pile-up on the A120 at Stebbing, near Braintree.

Following the accident the pair where taken to Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, where 63-year-old Mr Crawshaw was discharged after being treated for chest injuries.

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Mrs Crawshaw, 60, died later the same day as a result of the injuries to her head, chest and legs.

Last nighther grieving husband said: "No words can express our grief and loss. Brenda was very keen on the outdoors and nature, and loved hiking. Last year we completed a two-week hike across the Alps with a group of friends."

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The couple moved to Suffolk from Essex eight years ago and both enjoyed distinguished careers in the police force and the criminal justice system.

Mrs Crawshaw worked as a clerk at Essex Police's Criminal Justice Unit in Colchester, while her husband is a former head of the personnel department at Essex Police headquarters and chief superintendent who retired in 1989.

They were married in 1995 and have two grown-up children, Tim, 41, and Louise, 31. They also have three grandchildren Holly, 17, Poppy, 13 and eight-year-old Lily.

Mr Crawshaw said: "Brenda loved her work after nearly eighteen years' full-time service within the criminal justice department. She enjoyed the company of her work friends and colleagues.

"She enjoyed classical and jazz music, attending many concerts over the years. She also enjoyed gardening and interior design, having an artistic flair for her passion."

Mrs Crawshaw's family also praised the emergency services that dealt with the crash and staff at Broomfield Hospital.

The accident happened at around 4.30am when the taxi, in which Mr and Mrs Crawshaw were traveling, was involved in a collision with a Citroen C5. Two cars following the taxi, a Peugeot 106 and a Volkswagen Golf, where also involved in the crash.

A 25-year-old woman, who was driving the Golf, received severe facial injuries and is still recovering in hospital where her condition is described as "stable". Her male passenger was unhurt.

The driver of the Citroen, a 30-year-old man from Braintree, was taken to hospital with chest and leg injuries, but was later discharged.

The 36-year-old taxi driver, of Great Cornard was not hurt in the collision.

The crash happened on the A120 near to the junction with Warehouse Road, Stebbing.

Essex Police would like to hear from anyone who saw the vehicles in the moments leading up to the crash. Anyone with information should call them at Bocking Road Policing Unit on 01376 330722.

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