Jessica Falkholt Wiki
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Home and Away actress Jessica Falkholt, her sister and her parents died after their car collided with another with such force that they were ‘blown up’, a coronary investigation has heard.
Meanwhile, the Falkholts’ surviving relatives have taken comfort in the fact that they were “not alone” as bystanders tried to rescue them after the fiery accident off the south coast of New South Wales four years ago.
The ‘gentle souls’ were returning from a Christmas event when a drug-addicted driver collided with them on the Princes Highway in December 2017.
Husband and wife Lars and Vivian Falkholt were killed in the fiery accident. Jessica and her sister Annabelle were pulled from the rubble by passersby, but later died at the hospital.
“The tragedy of the events was compounded by the fact that the accident occurred on Boxing Day, a day that many of us look forward to celebrating with our family and friends,” he said.
Given the graphic nature of the accident, Ms. O’Sullivan paid a special tribute to community members who attempted to free the family from the rubble at “considerable personal risk.”
“The heroic actions of many community members and off-duty medical personnel are remarkable,” she said.
“As she (Vivian’s brother Paul Ponticello) pointed out, her actions provide him with peace of mind and the knowledge that her family was not alone after the accident.”
Witnesses described the cars colliding with such force that they “ were pushed into the air and momentarily formed a triangle, ” the NSW Forensic Court heard as Magistrate Teresa O’Sullivan delivered the investigation findings Tuesday.
During the investigation, family members described the Falkholts as ‘gentle souls’ who were extremely close and devoted to each other.
The family was experiencing ongoing grief and an ever-present sense of loss, O’Sullivan said.
“The tyranny of distance compounded his loss and a greater sense of helplessness,” he said of Falkholt’s relatives in Sweden.
Justice O’Sullivan said the collision had horrified the community.
The Falkholts’ deaths shook Australia the day after Christmas 2017
The investigation heard that the accident was caused by Craig Whitall, a long-time methadone program patient who had a variety of medical problems and a terrible driving history dating back to 1984.
A cocktail of prescription drugs was found in Mr. Whitall’s system, which a forensic pharmacologist said the investigation likely would have caused “ significant impairment of his cognitive and motor functions, which would have resulted in impaired ability of him to drive. ”
Given the circumstances of the collision, it was easy to overlook the fact that a fifth life was claimed, O’Sullivan said.
“Mr. Whittal may have had a troubled life and many flaws, but he was still part of a family that misses and mourns him,” he said.
Jessica Falkholt Quick and Facts
- Jessica Falkholt, her sister and her parents died during a road smash in 2017
- The crash was caused by Craig Whitall, a long-time methadone program patient
- Family described the Falkholts as ‘gentle souls’ who were extremely close