- Age at interview:
- Rachel is a senior social worker. She is married and has 2 children (1 died). Ethnic background/nationality: White British.
Well the date was the 30th October 2006, and my son, David, he used to be in the Para’s, he was in 1 PARA, and he left 1 PARA after serving 8 years in 1 PARA, and joined a company, a security company based up in London, an American based company. And he decided to do a year’s contract with this company to basically earn a lot more money than he was earning in the army. And he used to get a buzz from obviously jumping out of planes, and he’d been in Iraq and Sierra Leone, and Kosovo, so he had a lot of experience, anyway he went along and joined this company. And enjoyed it, he would spend 8 weeks out, 8 weeks home, 8 weeks out, 8 weeks home, and the last time he went out was September 2006, and to be fair he was umming and ahhing about going out back out here because obviously the situation out there was becoming a lot, lot more dangerous. But in the end he, he, he went and we spoke to him several times when we could and he was actually enjoying it quite nicely out there.
Was this a security company?
It was a security company, on this, and each time he went it was different sort of tour they had to do, and on this one they were basically, he was escorting, well to rebuild their country so he was looking after the convoys, that were going from a to b, to rebuild their country out in Iraq, to rebuild it all. And that’s what he was doing.
And on this particular time when he went, we went on holiday and when, when we were on holiday, it was in Portugal, this particular week, I felt very uncomfortable to be fair, before I went, and very uncomfortable when I was out there. And I managed to get hold of Dave on the Friday, and he was having a whale of a time and said that he had decided he was going to come back out in January, and that he’d booked a holiday for his girlfriend for New Year to take her to Las Vegas, and did I mind etc. And obviously I didn’t. And he was really happy. He was having a barbecue and he was looking forward to coming home in November.
And that was on the Friday I spoke to him, and then we flew back on the Sunday, and then on the Monday which was October the 30th, I went to work as usual, our first day back at term, and when I went back to work in the afternoon my husband’s car was at school, and for some unknown reason, and I thought, “That’s a bit strange, his car being here,” and then the headmaster at that time came out and said, “Oh I need to talk to you Rachel, in the office,” and I felt something strange, but I couldn’t quite my finger on it.
And I went into the office, the Headmaster’s and there was my husband and he didn’t really have to say anything because I knew what was going to be said. And then, looking, well then I think I just lost the plot to be fair, there was a lot of screaming and shouting, and pushing the Headmaster, and hiding under the desk like a little schoolgirl really, but I didn’t really know what to do. Anyway I was brought home, and then the sheer panic come in because obviously then I knew I needed to see my daughter, and obviously his girlfriend.