Double heartache of crash victim’s family

The grandma of Roseanna Ashleigh Cooper, Barbara Taylor and her sister Saffron Steeden, speak about their loss following the car crash which took her life.
The grandma of Roseanna Ashleigh Cooper, Barbara Taylor and her sister Saffron Steeden, speak about their loss following the car crash which took her life.
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THE family of tragic crash victim Roseanna Cooper have told how she lost her father in an horrific road collision in Blackpool when she was just 10.

And the 21-year-old student’s grieving family today said her death was the latest cruel blow in “a lifetime of heartache”.

Roseanna was one of seven young people in a yellow MG ZR which was travelling along Fleetwood Road in Anchorsholme when it hit a lamp-post at the junction with Kelso Avenue.

Ten years earlier her father John Cooper was killed when his Honda CVR 600 motorbike collided with a car on Talbot Road in central Blackpool.

Mr Cooper, who owned fish and chip shop the Hake Boat on Coronation Street, had gone out that night to ask a friend to be the best man at his wedding before the fatal crash in September 2001.

The 36-year-old had been due to marry girlfriend Avis Wilson six weeks after the accident.

Roseanna’s grandmother Barbara Taylor, from Normandie Avenue, Bispham, told The Gazette: “She was just making a bond with him when the accident happened.

“It’s terrible. We have had a sad lifetime in our family. At the moment we’re in denial and can’t really accept what’s happening.

“We never thought something like this would happen to Roseanna.

“It’s unbelievable to think all of them were in that car. Seatbelts can’t go around seven. I just can’t understand it.

“They will never learn no matter what the law says.”

The family said Roseanna, who was a tourism and leisure student at Blackpool and The Fylde College, was out celebrating the birth of her nephew on Monday.

She had also got the keys to a new flat on Grange Park the same day.

It is thought she had been out with friends in Walkabout in town before going to the Circus Casino.

The crash happened at around 5.45am on Tuesday.

Roseanna was pronounced dead at the scene while the other passengers, who were in their late teens to early 20s, were taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital suffering from various injuries.

The 20-year-old driver, from Pilling, was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous death and drink driving.

He has been released on police bail until September 14.

Mrs Taylor, who brought Roseanna up while she was a pupil at Bispham High School, said: “I adored her. All I tried to do was bring her up in a decent way.

“We had a lot of laughs with her. I used to take her everywhere and she’d cling to me.

“We took her on holiday to Spain and Wales. She was talking about us going to Jersey in November to celebrate both our birthdays.

“She loved singing and doing karaoke, she was a party girl and didn’t have a care in the world.”

The 71-year-old added: “I was very proud of her sticking at college. They say all the good die young.

“In the last text message she sent me she wrote ‘I really miss seeing you, I love you lots’.

“We were supposed to be going to bingo together yesterday – she said she was going to treat me.”

Roseanna, who leaves behind two brothers and six sisters, was due to finish her college course this year and had hopes of becoming an air-hostess.

Her 15-year-old sister Saffron Steeden said: “My big sister Roseanna will be sadly missed.

“I’ll miss all the fun times we had together. She was funny, amazing and bubbly and I loved her lots.”

More than a thousand people have signed up to a tribute page to remember Roseanna on social networking website Facebook.

Students on her course at college have been given the week off their studies to come to terms with the loss of their classmate.