Killed trying to retrieve skateboard

JOELLE DALLY
Last updated 15:13 20/12/2013
Jamie Haggath
Supplied

SKATEBOARD DEATH: Jamie Richard Haggath, 20, died after being hit by a car in Loburn, when trying to retrieve his skateboard.

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The mother of a young man killed while skateboarding says she doesn't blame the driver of the car that hit him.

Jamie Richard Haggath, 20, died after being hit in Loburn, near Rangiora, about 5.30pm yesterday. 

Police said initial inquiries indicated the young man had walked into the path of a vehicle on Carrs Rd, which is a 100kmh zone, while attempting to retrieve his skateboard which was lying on the road.

Haggath's mother Diane Haggath said Jamie and his father, Paul, had designed a new house for the family, which she and Paul were now building. 

''The house will be his legacy,'' she said. 

Haggath had been living in Auckland, but was spending the summer with his parents in Loburn, close to where the accident happened. 

Diane Haggath said her son was "just a lovely kid... loved by all of us". 

"It's just a tragic accident. We don't blame the driver at all. It's just one of those things," she said.

Her son loved his skateboard, which was a gift from his 22-year-old sister Katie, years ago. 

He came down to Loburn last month. 

Diane Haggath said she had recently broken her leg and he was helping to look after her. She saw him just before he went out for a skate on Station Rd, something he often did. He was returning home when he was killed. 

"He said, are you okay if I go out for a ride? I said, no problem, see you soon."

"He's done the route loads and loads of times," she said. 

"A few seconds either way, it wouldn't have happened."

The family moved to Auckland from north-east England about 10 years ago. Diane and Paul Haggath had moved to Loburn about three years ago, she said. 

Haggath was studying at Massey University. He was creative, and had previously studied graphic design, his mother said. 

Diane Haggath said his death was the worst news to receive at Christmas. 

"It feels like a bad dream."

Sergeant Colin Stewart said initial inquiries indicated neither speed nor alcohol were factors in the accident.

He said the driver, who was from Loburn, was headed to Rangiora. The driver was "very distraught".

Neighbours rushed to help Haggath, but he died at the scene. A woman, who is a nurse, offered help at the scene but was told "no, it's too late".

Diane Haggath said the family planned to hold a funeral for her son in North Canterbury, and then hold a remembrance ceremony in Auckland for his many friends there to attend.

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- The Press

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