A brave goodbye to mum and dad


The Mirror, 23/07/2003, p17

THEIR tiny orphan tears said it all.
Bewildered six-year-old Catriona Rainey turned to her brother Callum,
nine, and clutched his hand as they bravely said goodbye to parents
Peter and Alison.
The children from Dollar, Clackmannanshire, watched their mother and
father drown when their plastic dinghy capsized in rough seas off
Paphos in Cyprus on July 8.
Yesterday, surrounded by 500 mourners, they were comforted by the Rev
John Purves as he led prayers for the tragic couple as they were laid
to rest.
He paid moving tributes to the devout Christians he had developed a
close friendship with since they moved to the village from Freuchie,
Fife, almost six years ago.
He said: “I’m sure Alison will forgive me when I remind you that one of
the traditional pictures of the church is a boat.
“It reminds us that we travel together through life. We share one
another’s joys and sorrows.
“We have been acutely aware of this in these past two weeks as we have
shared our grievous loss of Peter and Alison.
“I hope that we can let the picture of Jesus’ storm-tossed boat speak
to us this afternoon.
“Peter and Alison are at rest. We must seek that same peace for
“We must hear the words of Jesus and take them to our hearts in a new
“Peace. Be still.
“The storm of life has swamped us and we are close to be overwhelmed by
“But Jesus is still in the boat and will bring us together to his
desired haven.”
The couple’s children left the service minutes before their parents’
bodies were carried away to waiting hearses.
They were taken from Dollar Parish Church to Perth Crematorium for
final committal.
Peter’s younger brother Neil travelled from the United States.
After the service, mourners placed bouquets of flowers on the doorstep
of the couple’s home.
The accident left the community stunned. Family friend, Tim Allen, who
was holidaying with the Raineys when they died and brought their
children home, said the impact of the tragedy was far-reaching.
He said: “It’s a cliche but it’s absolutely devastating. They were
close friends of mine and very popular people.”
Cypriot police said after the tragedy that Alison, 41, was with her son
in the dinghy in the St George area of Peyia.
They were about 100 metres from the coast when the boat turned over
because of high winds, and Alison and Callum fell into the rough sea.
Peter, 49, who was watching, swam out to help.
But shortly after all three had managed to climb back into the dinghy,
the craft overturned again.
All three were taken to hospital in Paphos, where Alison and Peter were
pronounced dead.
Tragedy struck as Peter, a helicopter test pilot, and his family were
taking a break from running their successful business, Highland
Aerosystems, which trains pilots to fly with night-vision goggles.
He was a former Royal Navy pilot and Falklands veteran.
Since the tragedy two weeks ago, Callum and Catriona have been looked
after by Alison’s parents James and Sheena Lessells, from Harthill,
near Sheffield.


Categories: Daily Mirror articles

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