Chris Daykin was a loving husband and stay-at-home father who lived in Halifax, England with his wife Helen and their two daughters. While Helen was travelling a lot for work during the week, Chris was taking care of the girls, making sure they arrived at school every day.
He really loved being able to spend so much time with his daughters, Pearl, 4, and Iris, 2. He took care of them and did everything a good dad could possibly do.
But one day, their lives took a tragic turn. Chris, who always got his daughters to school in time, didn’t show up with his daughters.
When Pearl’s school tried to call Chris, they got no reply. Not once did they try to contact Helen, who was away working in London.
Helen had also tried to call Chris that morning, but when he didn’t answer she assumed that he was busy with the girls or that he didn’t have his phone nearby at that moment.
It wasn’t until much later that she discovered what had happened.
The children’s grandmother had gone to Chris and Helen’s home, but couldn’t open the door.
It was then she noticed that the blinds were closed and that there was a carton of milk left out on the table.
She became worried and called the police.
The police rushed to the house and broke down the door. That’s when they all discovered a terrible scene.
In the bed, Pearl and Iris lay next to their dead dad.
Chris had died the night before of a heart attack.
Helen didn’t find out that her husband had died until 8 o’ clock that night. By that time, her daughters had been alone with their dad for almost a whole day.
As well as having to let it sink in that her husband was dead, she was also forced to live with the knowledge that her little girls had been alone with him at the time.
The children had spent the whole day upstairs. They had played with Helen’s shoes and make up, but hadn’t dared to go downstairs, for fear of leaving their dad alone.
When they couldn’t wake their dad, they had also found tablets to put in his mouth.
After a while they had just given up and crawled into bed with him.
It must have been terrible for Pearl and Iris, even though they surely didn’t completely understand what had happened.
Even though it has been more than a year since Chris passed away, Helen wants to share her family’s tragic story to make schools more aware of what to do if a child doesn’t show up to school.
Most often it comes down to the fact that a parent has forgotten to call in to report that their child is unwell and won’t be at school, but there’s always a chance that it can be something much worse.
In the worst case it can be a tragedy, like what happened to Chris. It can also be the case that a teacher discovers abuse occuring in a home when they call the family.
Helen tells the BBC how important it is to follow certain routines when trying to contact parents. If mom or dad doesn’t answer, call another contact person. If you can’t get hold of anyone, ensure that someone makes a call to the child’s house if they still don’t show up to school.
Share this article with your friends on Facebook so that more people become aware of how important it is to contact parents and guardians if children don’t turn up to school.
Published by Newsner. Please like.