THE widow of a dad who suffered a massive heart attack aged just 39 while playing football is still trying to come to terms with the tragedy a year after his death.
Today marks a year to the day since Colin Horner collapsed while enjoying a kick-about at Hartlepool’s Mill House Leisure Centre.
Six days later, on November 11, the dad-of-three lost his fight for life at the University Hospital of Hartlepool.
His heartbroken widow Caroline, a 43-year-old care worker, today spoke of the anguish and pain of spending the past year without her husband.
The couple’s sons Anthony, 24, and Kevin, 19, are planning a skydive with some of Colin’s ashes as he had wanted to take part in the daring feat close to what should have been his 40th birthday on December 20 last year.
Caroline said: “I’m still trying to come to terms with the fact he isn’t coming back.
“It just seems like yesterday for me.
“Time’s not a healer, it just gets a little bit more bearable. But everything’s still there.
“I’ve just been covering it over.
“I went back to work in March part-time, you’ve just got to get on with it.”
Caroline said children Anthony, Kevin and Danielle, 16, were “coping in their own way” and added: “It’s still raw to them.”
Caroline, from the Oxford Road area of Hartlepool, has organised a charity night in memory of former SAICA Packaging worker Colin.
She said: “That’s why I’ve planned this event – knowing the anniversary’s coming up, to take my mind off things.
“He collapsed on November 5 and I’m going to be reliving it from the fifth to the 11th.
“Rather than go down the route of being miserable, I thought ‘try to perk it up and remember the good times’.
“This is what this night’s really about, remembering the good times we had with him.”
The charity night is being held in aid of the critical care unit at the University Hospital of Hartlepool, in Holdforth Road, where medics battled to save him.
Caroline said: “The care Colin received was fantastic.
“I couldn’t fault it one bit. The more money we raise the better. It will definitely be an emotional night.”
Caroline hopes anyone who knew Colin, either through football, schooldays, his work or through his previous jobs including at Flexibility, are invited along to the charity night.
It will take place on Friday, November 11, at 7.30pm at Fever nightclub, in Church Street, and will feature Colin’s favourite ska music being played by DJ George Stuart, sponsored body waxes and headshaves, raffle prizes and a buffet.
Tickets are £3 and available by calling Caroline on 07926998049.