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Chinnor crash death family: Father feels 'abundance of loss'

media captionResidents gathered at Chinnor Community Church to remember the Powell family

A man who survived a crash which killed his wife and three of their children says he feels an "abundance of loss".

Josh Powell's wife Zoe, 29, died with Phoebe, eight, when their people carrier collided with a lorry in Oxfordshire.

Simeon, six, and four-year old Amelia, died at John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, where their father and 18-month-old sister Penny remain.

In a tribute to his family, Mr Powell said he faced an "uncertain future".

The crash happened on the A40, near a railway bridge between Oxford and Cassington, on 12 October.

image copyrightSarah Mak
image captionZoe Powell and her three eldest children died in the crash

Mr Powell, from Chinnor, said: "As I look to an uncertain future, I reflect on the fun that we had as a family, with feelings of sadness that it was cut so short.

"Before the adventure of starting a family nobody truly knows what to expect.

"All of life's preconceptions and what we see in the world around us meant that life as a family man was so much better than I expected it to be.

"I had been blessed with four wonderful children, whose thirst for life and hunger of adventure kept me busy but in the best possible way."

The 30-year-old described Phoebe as the "model of her mother but with a thirst to always know more" and that she was "clever and able to make great jumps of imagination - her great creations in Lego are testament to this".

'A great partnership'

He said Simeon "was just like his father, with a mischievous sense of humour [and] a keen sportsman" who had been shortly due to play his first football match.

Amelia was "kind and spirited", he said, with a "tenderness and thoughtfulness much more advanced than her years".

He added: "Myself and Zoe were as different as we were alike. Despite the frequent tensions this would bring, it was of immense benefit having such differing world views.

"Zoe was a dreamer; with a head spinning of new things to do or tales to tell. More than anything, we made a great partnership to raise a family."

Mrs Powell, who had lived in Chinnor since the mid-2010s but was previously from Sheffield, was a blogger who wrote about motherhood, family life and the challenges of having young children.

image captionThe crash happened on the A40, between Oxford and Cassington

The deaths came just months after the family lost everything in a blaze at their home.

Mr Powell thanked well-wishers for the support now that he had lost his "immediate nuclear family" and said there were "many battles to come".

The 1st Chinnor Scout Troop, where Mr Powell is a leader, marched to the private vigil, while residents in the cul-de-sac where the family lived illuminated their houses with green lights to show support.

image copyrightFAMILY HANDOUT
image captionJosh Powell says he faces an "uncertain future" following the loss of his wife and three older children

A JustGiving page set up by a railway worker colleague of Mr Powell has raised more than £120,000.

The 56-year-old driver of the lorry involved in the crash suffered minor injuries.

No arrests have been made, police said.

Related Topics

  • Oxford
  • Thames Valley Police
  • Chinnor
  • Cassington

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