A newly married couple who died in a traffic accident had a scan confirming a healthy pregnancy the day before they died.
rista Rowan (31), a native of Ontario, Canada but residing in Co Sligo, died on August 29, 2020 at Beaumont Hospital in Dublin.
Following an inquest into her death at Dublin Coroner’s Court, her devastated husband Eoin Rowan said today: “She was a comedian, really lighthearted and funny. She was beautiful inside and out.
“She made people feel comfortable, she was a really authentic person, there was no judgement, she really made people feel valued.”
The couple had married just weeks before the fatal accident that claimed Ms Rowan’s life and that of her unborn baby.
Ms Rowan was traveling northbound on the M1 to a work meeting in Newry on 19 August 2020 when the collision occurred.
A lorry driver described how her car crossed the M1 ahead from the fast lane onto the hard shoulder before going over a guardrail, overturning and colliding with a signpost.
Truck driver Barry Young stopped and returned to the scene, holding the woman’s head while waiting for an ambulance to arrive.
“The last thing I wanted to do was leave her alone, it was important to me that someone was there,” Mr Young told the court.
The reopened inquest into Ms Rowan’s death heard from her husband, who said she was healthy and happy. They had married just weeks before before meeting four years earlier when they were both living in Toronto.
The couple lived together on three different continents before moving to Ireland, where Ms. Rowan excelled in her work as a clinical sales representative at medical device company Boston Scientific.
Family members, including Ms Rowan’s mother Kelly and sister Kaitlyn, watched the inquest from Canada via video link.
“She was three months pregnant, a scan was done in Holles Street the day before and everything was fine,” Mr Rowan told the inquest.
“She was in great health, she was happy and excited. She’d slept through the night so fatigue wasn’t a factor.”
His wife had a kale and berry smoothie for breakfast and he walked her to the door of their apartment in Ballsbridge, Dublin, when she left, he said.
Their work meeting was scheduled for noon.
At 11.04am, Ms Rowan’s car was unable to negotiate a right hand bend at Dunmore, Dundalk, Co Louth, one kilometer from Junction 17.
Dash camera footage of Ms Rowan’s car moving across the two lanes of the M1 was provided to Gardaí by two different truck drivers.
No attempt had been made to turn the steering wheel to negotiate a corner and no attempt to brake. Her seat belt was on, she was not using a mobile phone and she was not speeding, the court heard. There were no mechanical defects on the car.
Paramedic John Nixon, from Dundalk, responded and arrived at the scene at 11.24am.
“There was one driver who wasn’t responding, with shallow breaths that indicated brain injury,” he said.
Ms Rowan was taken to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda. She was later transferred to Beaumont Hospital for CT brain scans and MRI scans, but her prognosis was poor.
She died on August 29 and her kidneys were donated, saving the lives of two others.
“It is a recognition of the great gift she has imparted,” the coroner said of a letter submitted to the Organ Donation Transplant Ireland inquest.
The cause of death was brain trauma from a road traffic accident and the coroner recorded a narrative verdict finding that baby Ree Rowan had not survived the effects of the fatal collision.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/courts/pregnant-newlywed-who-died-in-road-collision-was-beautiful-inside-and-out-her-husband-tells-inquest-41983120.html Pregnant newlyweds who died in a traffic accident were “beautiful inside and out,” her husband says when asked