THE devastated partner of a man who died from horrific chainsaw wounds to his throat, has told how she and her daughter tried in vain to save him.
Joanne Eland was with Pete Conway, her partner of 14 years, on December 23 when he took his chainsaw to the garden to test it.
Later she glanced through the kitchen window of his home at Hillside Grove, Brierley, and saw him fall backwards.
She said: “I thought he’d just slipped as it was raining and he had his leather slippers on.
“I could hear his chainsaw still running. As I got nearer I saw he hadn’t just fallen....it ws a horrible shock.
“I screamed and my daughter Trudy who is 14 came running out. She screamed too when she saw Pete, but then she clicked in to calm mode and took control.
“I dialled 999 and was told to get a towel to try to stem the bleeding. We did try but his injuries were too severe....there was blood everywhere.
“We tried CPR too but we were helpless, there was nothing we could do to save him”.
Former miner Pete, 62, was trying out the chainsaw for a friend who wanted to borrow it, said Joanne. “I was going to tell him to be careful when this happened.
“We don’t know how it did. It’s a freak, tragic accident. Our only comfort is it must have been instant - he didn’t even have time to cry out”.
Her late partner, who had been married twice, had three children, Shelley, Lee and Trudy, and two grandchildren, said Joanne. He also leaves a brother and a sister.
“He wasn’t well. He had lung disease and a bad back, but he was independent and always wanted to do things himself”, she added.
“We’d like to warn everyone who uses tools like this to make sure they know what they’re doing and that they’re safe. We’d hate anyone else to have to go through this”.
Mr Conway’s ex-sister-in-law Ann Aldridge said people described Pete as a ‘loveable rogue’. He was sometimes mistaken for Barry Chuckle of the Chuckle Brothers, she added, and was always cracking jokes.
An inquest in to Mr Conway’s death was opened and adjourned at Sheffield. His funeral takes place today, January 5, from 1.30pm at St Luke’s Church, Grimethorpe.