The husband of a Taranaki grandmother killed while trying to
remove barriers from a highway has urged those responsible to
"man up" and come forward.
Hawera woman Christine Anne Fairweather, 57, was struck by a
vehicle in the southbound lane of State Highway 3 at Normanby
during atrocious weather on Saturday night.
Police said she had stopped her car and turned on the hazard
lights when she found metal fence frames had been
intentionally moved onto the road.
Mrs Fairweather was attempting to move the frames when she
was struck by a northbound vehicle about 11.50pm. She died at
Husband John Fairweather has urged those responsible to "man
up" and hand themselves in.
"You've given us a life sentence. Hope you're bloody proud of
yourselves," he said on Radio New Zealand.
"If it's a prank and a joke, it's cost a lot of people grief,
and we're devastated. I'll never be the same again."
Mrs Fairweather had been out to babysit her grandchildren in
Kaponga and was returning home when the incident happened.
"The last I said to her was be careful. The last thing my
daughter said to her on her way home was be careful."
Mrs Fairweather had reached Normanby when she came across the
"She got out of the car, trying to save other people's lives,
went to remove it and got struck. It was just her being nice.
She was like that, trying to help some poor family that might
have run into it," Mr Fairweather told Radio New Zealand.
"I don't know how she didn't see or hear anything coming, but
that's how it happened. She just got hit, and unfortunately
it was the biggest mistake she ever made.
"I'm gutted. I've lost the love of my life."
The driver who struck Mrs Fairweather had a first aid
certificate and tried to resuscitate her, but was unable to.
Mr Fairweather said his wife would have no animosity towards
the driver: "He tried to save her."
Mrs Fairweather was always helping others and was well-loved
by family and the community. She volunteered at the local
hospice shop and looked after friends and family.
"She was a diamond -- you wouldn't have found a more generous
lady in your life."
Police were seeking witnesses who may have seen the barriers
being moved from the footpath onto the road.
Detective Guy Jackson of Taranaki CIB told Radio New Zealand
that pedestrians had been seen in the area and there may have
been a party nearby.
Police were keeping an open mind as to what had happened.
Mr Jackson said it was a "stupid act" with a tragic outcome.
He hoped whoever was responsible would come forward and let
the family get on with their grieving.
Anyone with information was asked to call Mr Jackson on (06)
215 5263 or the anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111.