A Fleetwood biker was tragically killed in a crash on the Isle of Man – just half an hour after being reunited with his long lost dad.
Paul Cowell on his motorbike, with partner Nicola Clark
Paul Cowell, 56, of Hathaway Road, was killed instantly when his motorbike collided with a campervan on part of the Isle of Man TT Mountain Course on Monday, September 27.
He had travelled to the island to see his friends, and while he was there he met his father for the first time in 35 years.
His stepson-in-law Danny Reeve, 31, said: “Paul was as happy as larry. He finally got to talk to his dad. Then just a few minutes later, he was killed.”
Paul leaves behind two children, two stepchildren, and four grandchildren
Paul, a dad and stepdad, was born on the Isle of Man and later moved to Fleetwood, where he worked as a handyman.
It is believed he was blinded by the sun as he drove uphill at near Guthrie’s Memorial on Mountain Road at around 4.15pm on the day of the tragedy.
He leaves behind his partner of 16 years, Nicola Clark, two children, two step-children, and four grandchildren, including a two-week-old grandson, Lake.
A tiny Isle of Man T-shirt for the newborn was found among Paul’s possessions by police following his death.
His stepdaughter Demi said: “Paul was like a big, friendly giant, a teddy bear. He was generous and would do anything for anyone.
“The whole family is in shock. We’re still at the stage where we don’t quite believe it. It has affected his sons and my mum most of all; they’re finding it really hard at the moment. My mum went over to the Isle of Man to see him – but she couldn’t bring him home.”
The family now hopes to raise £6,000 to bring Paul’s body back to Fleetwood and give him a proper send-off.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to cover the costs of travel and funeral arrangements, and has so far raised £2,860.
Demi said: “It would mean the world to us to get him home. That’s why we have set up the GoFundMe page. We’re all struggling, we’re all trying to think of different ways to raise money. We didn’t expect this. We didn’t expect him to go and visit his family and friends and never come back.
“Paul was the life and soul of the family. He was the man of the house, and the man of the whole street. He was always helping people; he was always there for others.”
Danny said: “It’s not just a big loss for his family, it’s a loss for his friends as well. If you asked Paul to do something he would to it in a heartbeat, and he’d never expect anything in return.
“To have him home would take a huge weight off our shoulders. Everyone dies, but we didn’t expect him to die to early in life and in such a horrible way. Once we get him back and get the funeral out of the way, we can finally start to move on. Now he’s on the Isle of Man, his sons can’t go to see him because they’re not double-jabbed. They’re absolutely distraught.”