NEWS..........PIC AARON CURRAN.......3 MARCH 2004....PICTURED ARE TEACHERS MALCOLM AND ESME BECK WHO HAVE COMPLETED 40 YEARS SERVICE WITH LUTHERAN EDUCATION AUSTRALIA.
NEWS..........PIC AARON CURRAN.......3 MARCH 2004....PICTURED ARE TEACHERS MALCOLM AND ESME BECK WHO HAVE COMPLETED 40 YEARS SERVICE WITH LUTHERAN EDUCATION AUSTRALIA.

Victims of Christmas Eve crash remembered as ‘loving’ couple

A COUPLE struck and killed by a car in a Christmas Eve tragedy has been remembered as a loving pair.

Malcolm and Esme Beck were hit by a blue Mazda SUB as they crossed Ross River Rd at Mysterton, Townsville, about 7.10pm following the end of a nearby church service.

The retired Cairns couple, aged in their mid-70s, had been visiting one of their two daughters, Annette Beck, in Townsville for Christmas.

 

NEWS..........PIC AARON CURRAN.......3 MARCH 2004....PICTURED ARE TEACHERS MALCOLM AND ESME BECK WHO HAVE COMPLETED 40 YEARS SERVICE WITH LUTHERAN EDUCATION AUSTRALIA.
NEWS..........PIC AARON CURRAN.......3 MARCH 2004....PICTURED ARE TEACHERS MALCOLM AND ESME BECK WHO HAVE COMPLETED 40 YEARS SERVICE WITH LUTHERAN EDUCATION AUSTRALIA.

 

"It's just a terrible tragedy," Ms Beck said yesterday as she returned to the scene of the crash.

Townsville Police acting Inspector Steve Batterham said the couple had been hit by the SUV, which had been travelling outbound.

It is understood the daughter might have witnessed the incident.

"We are led to believe the daughter was (there)," acting Insp Batterham said.

"I'm led to believe that she may have been there to collect her parents."

The male driver, a local man in his 30s, was treated for shock and was taken to Townsville Hospital.

 

Two pedestrians have died after they were struck by a car on Charters Towers Rd at the intersection with Bowen Rd in Townsville City on Christmas Eve.
Two pedestrians have died after they were struck by a car on Charters Towers Rd at the intersection with Bowen Rd in Townsville City on Christmas Eve.

 

Witnesses said they were brought to tears at the sight of the tragic incident.

"I heard the bang and turned around … seen the couple in the air flying," one woman told T he Bulletin on Monday night.

"When we saw everything we just broke down and cried.

"Their family will be expecting them home … just a few hours away until Christmas."

First responders and paramedics provided first aid for about 30 minutes, but they could not be saved.

 

Family members arrive at the scene of a double fatal on Ross River Road, Mundingburra. Picture: Zak Simmonds
Family members arrive at the scene of a double fatal on Ross River Road, Mundingburra. Picture: Zak Simmonds

 

 

Cairns Lutheran Parish Pastor Greg Schiller delivered the news to his church congregation during Christmas Day mass yesterday.

He said the Becks were much loved by the church family.

"It's a total shock," he said.

"We're all sad, and I had great difficulty telling the people in church, making the announcement."

Malcolm and Esme Beck.
Malcolm and Esme Beck.

He said the couple, who had both taught at Peace Lutheran College, had only just gathered with the church on Sunday before they flew to Townsville to be with their daughter for Christmas.

"They have family, of course, but their daughters don't live in Cairns," he said.

"They became like parents to all of us, that's for sure."

Acting Insp Batterham said it was very early on in investigations and more witnesses were expected to be spoken to in the coming days.

No charges were expected against the driver at this stage, he said.

The vehicle involved in the crash has been seized by police and will undergo forensic and mechanical inspections.

Acting Insp Batterham said the driver had returned a negative breath test and there was no indication of drugs.

He said thoughts went out to the family and friends of the couple, as well as the driver and his family.

"Christmas is a time when families come together to celebrate," he said.

"We cannot begin to understand the grief and the loss that is being felt by the families of these people.

"I'm certain we stand united as a community … for those impacted by this event."

"Life is a precious gift so please practice safety and responsibility on, around and near our roads.

Police are calling more witnesses to the crash to come forward.

The Forensic Crash Unit is continuing to investigate.

A report will be prepared for the coroner.



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