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Crowdfunding raises tens of thousands for man who lost wife and three children in A40 crash

Written by on 15 October 2020

More than GBP70,000 has been raised for a man who lost his wife and three of his children in a car crash near Oxford.

Over 2,000 people have donated to a crowdfunding page set up on Wednesday following the deaths of 29-year-old Zoe Powell and her three young children.

Ms Powell, along with Phoebe, eight, Simeon, six, and four-year-old Amelia, died on Monday night when their Subaru people carrier collided with a heavy goods vehicle on the A40.

Zoe Powell and one of her daughters. Pic: Instagram

Josh Powell, who was a passenger, and his 18-month old daughter remain in hospital where they are in a “serious” condition.

Thames Valley Police said Mr Powell, 30, and his youngest child are displaying signs of “improvement” and “are expected to make a recovery”.

The JustGiving page, set up by Andrew Welsford, read: “This is such a sad and tragic loss for a work colleague on the railway, whose family have been taken from him in a tragic car crash near Oxford.”

Making reference to railway workers’ distinctive orange uniform, it said: “Many people in the world of the Orange Army will know Josh and I hope will contribute to give him some financial support when he needs later in recovery.”

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Grieving friends, neighbours and colleagues described the Powells as “delightful”.

Strangers have taken to the site also leaving heartfelt messages.

A police witness appeal sign on the A40 near Oxford where a four-year-old girl, a six-year-old boy, an eight-year-old girl and a 29-year-old woman from Chinnor, Oxfordshire, died Monday night after a collision between a people carrier and a heavy goods vehicle.
Police are asking for witnesses to the crash to contact them

One person wrote: “I don’t know the family but my thoughts are truly with you.”

Another person put: “What can you say? What can you do to afford some measure of comfort, following such a harsh and unforgiving tragedy? Our thoughts and prayers are with Josh, his family, friends and colleagues.”

The accident took place just months after the family was forced into temporary accommodation after a fire broke out at their Chinnor home in South Oxfordshire.

A statement from the local church, where the family were regular members, said “(The Powells) have been active, involved and much-loved members of Chinnor Community Church throughout their young lives.

The Powell family
The Powell family were in a car that collided with a heavy goods vehicle

“The news of the death of Zoe, Phoebe, Simeon and Amelia has shocked and saddened not just their church family here but also the whole community of Chinnor in which they were known and greatly loved.

“The family placed their belief in Jesus as Lord and Saviour, and we are confident that Zoe and the children are now safe in the arms of God.

“Our thoughts are with the family as we pray for healing and recovery for Josh and (his daughter).”

The truck driver, a 56-year-old man, suffered minor injuries and has fully co-operated with the investigation, police said.

There have been no arrests and detectives are asking witnesses or those with dashcam footage to contact them.