Fear of not seeing my children again kept me alive, says hit-and-run victim

A father of three whose leg was amputated after a car ploughed into him in a hit-and-run said today that the fear of not seeing his children again helped him cling on to life.

Timothy Saint Jean, 45, was standing at the roadside after his vehicle suffered a breakdown when a BMW 330 Sport smashed into another car, sending it flying into his path.

He said he looked down and could not see his left leg following the collision on the A406 North Circular flyover at Redbridge Roundabout.

He had been to a funeral with his friend Wayne Sharpe — who was also seriously hurt. The pair remain in the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, continuing a long rehabilitation from their horrific injuries.

Timothy St Jean said the fear of not seeing his children again kept him alive (Alex Lentati)

The BMW driver fled on foot after the crash at about 10.30pm on January 9.

Mr Saint Jean, a Thames Water engineer from Highbury, has three children, Isaiah, 17, Gabriella, 10, and Sophia, five. He said: “We were on a narrow pavement and had called for assistance. A BMW came at speed and hit a white Vauxhall Vectra, pushing it on to us. We were crushed.

“I looked down and I couldn’t see my left leg. I looked at Wayne and he said, ‘We are here’ — meaning we are still alive. I phoned my brother and told him what had happened.

“I was still conscious and just wanted to let the family know. I said, ‘Tell the kids I love them.’ I don’t know how I survived. I suffer a form of haemophilia so was convinced I was going to bleed to death.

“I think the only thing that saved me was that I had to see my children again. People said the fact that I managed to make the call and keep in control was nothing short of a miracle. It was my will to live.”

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He urged the public to help police catch the hit-and-run driver, saying: “I am frustrated [the driver] is sitting at home while we are in hospital with our lives changed for ever. ”

Mr Sharpe, 46, from Ilford, feared he would also have a leg amputated but specialists at the Royal London carried out reconstructive surgery.

The businessman, who has a daughter, nine, said: “I was about to open a shop. Now that’s on hold like everything in my life. These drivers don’t realise they have the equivalent of a loaded gun. There need to be stronger penalties.”

Mr Saint Jean said hospital staff had been “amazing, we can’t thank them enough”. Jennifer Buchanan of Fieldfisher, the legal firm acting for the pair, said: “To have fled leaving two men so catastrophically injured is appalling. If the driver is not found it could delay accessing funds for rehabilitation.”

A Met police spokesman said: “The occupants of the Vectra, a driver and passenger, were not injured. The BMW stopped, but the male driver ran off.” 

A 25-year-old man has been arrested and released under investigation.

Contact the witness appeal line on 020 8597 4874 or police on 101.

Source : https://www.standard.co.uk/news/crime/fear-of-not-seeing-my-children-again-kept-me-alive-says-hitandrun-victim-a3759061.html