Families tell of their pain in tributes to crash victims
THE families of Anne Kerr and Joe Cairns have told of their pain after the distracted lorry driver who killed them was locked up.
Teaching assistant Anne, from Southport, and 14-year-old pupil Joe were travelling to Ormksirk’s Pontville School on January 8 last year when James Majury’s lorry ploughed into the minibus carrying them.
Majury, 33, had been using his phone throughout almost his entire journey and reacted just half a second before the collision with the minibus which was waiting in queuing traffic.
Five others; the driver of the minibus and three teenage passengers, as well as the driver of a Ford Transit van, all suffered multiple serious injuries in the seven-car collision which happened on the M58 close to junction 3 at Bickerstaffe.
In a tribute released after Majury was sentenced on Friday, Joe’s mum, Steph, said: “Joe really liked going to school with Anne. Every day he liked to take with him a pug teddy, and his big red blanket and sit on the back seat. I always used to stand and wave him off and tell him I loved him.
“I miss my little boy every minute of every day. I feel useless now he’s not here anymore because he was my world. I always thought he needed me because of his special needs but it turned out I needed him way more.
“It’s ripped me apart and the only thing that keeps me going are my three other beautiful children.
“I cry every day thinking about Joe. He’s constantly on my mind, I miss his humour and his company. I think about him laughing because it was so infectious and made me smile, he made everybody smile. He was our hero.”
Mum-of-two Anne accompanied Joe on his journey to school each morning. Her husband, Simon, said: “During Anne’s working day we would keep in regular contact with text messages and when I didn’t hear back from her on that morning, I knew in the back of my mind that something was wrong.
“We shared that connection that people who love each other have, call it instinct or something, it’s hard to explain. But I just knew something was very wrong.
“Anne was my rock. The emptiness I, and our two sons, feel around the house is overwhelming. All our plans for the future and our retirement were taken away on that cold January morning on the M58.
“I wake some nights and it takes me a few seconds to realise why Anne is a not lying next to me, in those seconds I hope that her death was just a nightmare.
“Anne was a young 50 and in good health. She should have had many years ahead of her.”
Majury was given a sentence of eight years and 10 months for two death by dangerous driving offences and five counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
He was also banned from driving for six years after his release.
Joe Cairns with mum Steph and, right, Anne Kerr