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“Wonderful” grandparents missing after car was swept away in the River Trent named

A couple who died when their car was swept away in the River Trent has been named.

John Lillistone, 83, and his wife Patricia, 82, disappeared when the vehicle went into the swollen river on February 1st.

It took two weeks to find the car and recover the bodies.


The Lillistone family said in a statement:

“John and Patricia were loving, caring parents and grandparents who were always there for family and friends.

“Our family is devastated by the loss of two wonderful people and they will be dearly missed by all.

“We have many happy memories of our time spent together that we will cherish forever.

“We would like to thank the emergency services and other agencies involved for their tireless effort and support at this very difficult time.”

John and Patricia were from Lowdham, Nottinghsmahire.

Inspector Tim Ringer, leading the recovery operation, said:

“This has been a difficult and complex operation involving dozens of people from multiple agencies.

“Underwater recoveries of this nature are always very challenging, but our divers’ work has been further complicated by the very fast flowing water at the site.

“It was simply not safe to attempt this wok before today.

“Shortly after 10.30am this morning we were able to enter the water and – as expected – discovered two bodies inside the vehicle.

“Our thoughts remain with the family of the deceased who have asked for their privacy to be respected at what I know is an immensely difficult time.”

Eyewitness Christopher Bulpitt said he saw the car drifting along the river.

He said: “I sat sitting having tea in our conservatory and this blue car floated down the river.

“The bonnet was down into the water; the back was sticking up a bit and it looked like two people inside.”

Mr Bulpitt’s wife Pauline added:

“It was quite shocking.

“My husband rushed to get his Wellington boots, hoping the car would come into the bank further up and we might be able to do something to help.

“There was another gentleman running down the field to see if he could do something to help but the car carried on down.”





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