Mum seeks answers to son's accident

Son's death still unexplained

LEIGHTON KEITH
Last updated 05:00 02/12/2013
Anthony Charlton stand
ANDY JACKSON
ANSWERS NEEDED: Circumstances around Anthony Charlton's death remain a mystery.

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Almost two months after her son was killed in Zanzibar, a New Plymouth mother is still fighting to get answers about his death.

Anthony Charlton died when he was hit by a hotel shuttle bus on the island, off East Africa, where he was best man at a cousin's wedding on October 10.

Born in England, Mr Charlton had grown up in Botswana but moved to New Plymouth 11 years ago with his family.

He was a partner in his parents' company PestAway.

His mother, Sandra, told the Taranaki Daily News she was frustrated at the lack of information about her son's death.

"The police are not responding to us, the hotel owners are not getting back to us, nobody is responding to our emails. We are getting nothing back," Mrs Charlton said.

"I just feel, as a mother, I need to fight for Anthony and to get a little bit of justice for him.

"For my son, I need questions answered. He was deprived of the rest of his life and we've been deprived of him."

Mrs Charlton said the bus that hit her son had just dropped him and a group of relatives off at their rooms after the reception. The driver ran away after the accident, she said.

"They [family members] had to lift the bus to get Anthony out."

The driver was later found but the family were still seeking answers to establish if he had been drinking or if he would be charged with Anthony's death.

"They had him in custody but that's the last we heard," Mrs Charlton said.

"The scary part is that everybody was relying on the police to do the next step but they wouldn't give us any indication."

Mrs Charlton said Anthony, who had just turned 30, was respectful and loved by everybody.

"He worked hard, was was an honest and reliable person, and he played hard.

"He was always the life and soul of the party."

She said the family would continue the fight to get answers and were considering taking legal action against the hotel over Anthony's death.

"I think that they are hoping it's going to get brushed under the table.

"It's about getting justice for Anthony and to make sure it never happens to another family. I would hate for another family to have to go through this - it's soul destroying.

"The world that we lived in seven weeks ago was just perfect, but now our world has been turned upside down."

The family was grateful Anthony had travel insurance, which took care of all of the arrangements to get his body home. Mrs Charlton urged anyone heading overseas to take out insurance.

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"You need to make sure everything is in place. When they go away on holiday, you don't expect them to come home in a coffin."

- © Fairfax NZ News

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