Trucker’s body will be flown back home

Paul Stanyard and Pamela Hirst. Photo: Submitted

Paul Stanyard and Pamela Hirst. Photo: Submitted - Credit: Submitted

A driver who died abroad while working for a Great Yarmouth based haulage company will be buried in his hometown thanks to the generosity of internet fundraisers.

Paul Stanyard, 59, died in Italy en route to Greece but because he had no valid life insurance, the cost of bringing his body home to Yorkshire fell to his family.

Pamela Hirst, also 59 and Paul’s partner of 26 years, was contacted by Matthews Transport and told the cost of repatriating his body would be between £15,000-£17,000.

The Gapton Hall-based hauliers offered £5,000 towards the costs but said that because Paul died of natural causes and not in an accident, the cost of bringing him home was not covered by their employers’ insurance.

Ms Hirst, who lives in Alicante, Spain said she was heartbroken, adding: “It was such a shock. I’d only spoken to him in the morning.”

Unable to pay the rest, Pamela feared that her partner would be forced into a pauper’s grave in Italy, paid for by the local government.

The family started a campaign on fundraising website Go Fund Me and set a target of £10,000.

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Within days they smashed their target and raised over £23,490.

She thanked the contributors to the fund for their generosity and messages of support.

Paul, split his time between the UK and Spain and was due to retire next year.

Trevor Matthews, managing director of the haulage company, said: “We found out about 4.30am in the morning last Monday and despatched one of our drivers from Milan to see if we could do anything.”

He added he had made a substantial offer to the family, including covering the cost of flights to Italy if Paul was buried abroad.