Two days ago, Charlotte, Harry Dunn's mother, finally forced to empty the bed of her 19-year-old son. He slept for the last time six and a half weeks ago, the night before his death, in a head-on collision with the vehicle of the American diplomat's wife, Anne Sacoolas, who allegedly drove the wrong side of the road.
"It broke me, really broke me," says Charlotte. "It was the first time in six weeks that I really cried – really, really cried. There were few breakdowns, but we all had to try to be stoic for Niall. "
Niall is Harry's not identical twin. He is devastated by the death of his brother, to the point that Thursday was the first time he had left home since his last visit to Harry less than an hour before the crash.
The boys were raised by Charlotte and their father Tim, as well as by their in-laws, Bruce and Tracey, to be "honest as long as the day is long, admit if they did something wrong" and " take responsibility for their actions.
Both Bruce and Tracey have two grown children from previous relationships and all the children see themselves as brothers and sisters, says Charlotte. Their in-laws, too, "look more like a second group of parents than steps."
Harry in adolescence
Niall, who has naturally been the hardest hit, does not understand how Ms. Sacoolas can claim diplomatic immunity, leave the country and not do justice to the justice for the death of her beloved brother. Few people can.
This week, the family called on Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to intervene. He told them that the US government had refused two requests to lift Mrs. Sacoolas' immunity. Now, they believe that the only way to ensure the death of their son is not "swept under the carpet" is to reveal all the details of his horrible death.
In America: Anne Sacoolas
The only hope for the family now is for the public opinion court to pressure President Trump.
"It's an abuse of diplomatic immunity," says Charlotte. "When drafting the laws in the sixties, they were not intended to protect the wife of a diplomat who had unintentionally killed a 19-year-old boy in an accident. No one else should have to suffer like us – as Harry did.
'It's still unreal. But when you wake up in the morning, if you manage to rest, and the feeling of pain that gnaws at you in the hollow of your belly hits you, you know that's the case.
"The weather was nice that day – about 25 degrees – so Harry (a motorcycle enthusiast) wanted to go for a walk to see his brother who had left our house in April and his father.
"I passed him on his way home from work at 7:10 pm He nodded for me. I raised my hand and thought to see him in a few hours.
"Well, yes, but he was not alive next time."
Bruce takes Charlotte's hand as Tracey strokes Tim's arm. For several minutes, the hotel room where we meet is filled with an incredibly sad silence until Charlotte wipes tears from her cheeks to form a tearful smile.
"The boys were really close," she says. "As young people, they were inseparable and always ready to do silly things." She remembered the time, at the age of 18 months, she caught them trying to escape the game pen – Niall on all fours and Harry jumping on him the back. While there was no girlfriend to report, Harry had told his mother that "it was not calm in the girls' department."
Dedicated Brothers: Harry, on the right, and Niall, three
Niall, who works in steelmaking, went back to his mother's house after Harry's loss. "Blessed is his heart, he said that it really upset him to see us upset and that we had to be strong for him."
She adds: Thursday was the first day he came out of the house because it was the funeral of his great-grandfather, Tim's Grandad. That's why I chose Thursday to remove Harry's sheets from his bed. He had slept only once. . . '
Charlotte, 44, works in a medical office, while her husband, Bruce, 55, is a site manager. The twin's father, Tim, 50, is responsible for boarding school maintenance, while his wife Tracey, 52, works for the NHS in clinical coding. She is a very close and deeply caring family who has never tried to give priority to her children.
Their sorrow is brutal and painful to see – as well as their "sense of injustice" and their "misguidance".
The nation – and even the world – is in shock since the news of Harry's death was announced last weekend. He was killed on August 27 near RAF Croughton, a US intelligence hub in Northamptonshire. It is said that Ms. Sacoolas was driving on the wrong side of the road at the time of the collision.
Six days after Harry's death, officers from Northampton told them of their intention to charge Ms. Sacoolas with death for dangerous driving – for which, if convicted, she was facing a custodial sentence – they asked that the charge is reduced to death by imprudent conduct.
"They told us that two of her kids were in the car with her," says Charlotte. "It broke us. We were really angry for them. How on earth should these children feel? They must be extremely traumatized. It was shocking.
In mourning: from left to right, Tim, Tracey, Bruce and Charlotte
"We were very honest with the police and said, although we obviously wanted justice done to our son, we wanted to parent ourselves, but we wanted to work with the police and the courts to make sure that the charges be reduced and receive a suspended sentence so that it can continue. a mother.
"Looking back, we curse ourselves for our understanding."
Charlotte is crying. "We have six weeks and we have not had anything. It's like Harry is worthless. They swept it under the carpet.
This family is fighting in every way possible to get justice for Harry, by lobbying the US government for it to waive the diplomatic immunity that protects Ms. Sacoolas from prosecution.
They did it with the kind of measured dignity that says a lot about the people that they are. When Charlotte sat next to her son's terribly broken body at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford six and a half weeks ago, she made a promise. "We asked if we could donate an organ," she says. "They just looked at us and said, 'I'm sorry. There is nothing to do. There was not much that was broken inside or out.
"We only had one tissue donation left. I think it's the retina of his eyes and the skin that has not been touched. "
She adds, "We each had a few minutes with him. I promised him that we would all care about each other again. I said we would find a way to continue living our life even though it would be very different. And I promised him that justice would be done. By car, it was … "
She shakes her head. "I did not want to leave him, I did not want to go home, I felt like letting him down by leaving him there."
Next week, they will travel to the United States in the hope of pleading their case with President Trump, who said three days ago that they "were trying to find a solution."
They will also appear on American television to garner support from the public, who is already quite sympathetic to this family. "We have received thousands of messages of support from America," said Tim. "It's just amazing that this is happening. I am full of hope. That the President of the United States actually mentions our son and says that he is looking into the issue gives me hope. It means that Harry is on his radar.
Charlotte's face is full of grief when she looks at Tim from who she separated when the twins were 13 months old.
"We did not hear anything from Ms. Sacoolas, I want her version of the story, especially for Tim's sake, he had the terrible experience of being with Harry at the scene of the accident."
Tim was at home a little over three miles away when a friend of the fire department, recognizing Harry, called to tell him that his son had had an accident.
"You do not think it will be the worst thing," he says. "I thought to myself:" silly b **** r's done wrong. "Then when I arrived there was a cordon of police, so I had to park a few hundred meters away, I approached a policeman and said," I'm his father. " replied, "All right, they're just doing something for him." The paramedics were working on him, putting him on a stretcher and tearing all his clothes in. I could see his body.
Tim looks at the wall as he speaks. His anguish is engraved on his face and those around him shed silent tears. It's the first time he's talking about this terrible evening.
"I could not get close enough to hold his hand, there were too many people working on him.
"Oh, I wish I could hold her hand." A sincere sigh shakes the heavy carcass of this man.
Charlotte sobs: "I would have liked you to do it."
Tim responds, "I think about it all the time."
He knew that his son's legs and arms were broken, but by that time he had no idea of his severe chest injuries or internal bleeding.
"The general consensus was that he was going to be fine," he says. "When I called Charlotte, Bruce answered. I was happy. To tell him would have been the worst thing I ever had to do. "
Charlotte and Bruce immediately went to the hospital after recovering Niall.
"I can not explain it, but I knew we had lost it," she says. Niall sat in the front of the car and just reached back to take my hand. We do not know yet when he died because I did not have the courage to ask for the discharge summary of the hospital, whether they lost it or not. But I knew he was gone. I can not explain it. I just felt this sensation in the pit of my stomach.
Charlotte knows that 16 John Radcliffe staff members tried to save Harry.
Tim says, "The desperation was terrible. It was like the biggest pain in the interior. He just got out. It's like your brain wants to explode.
Charlotte nods: "Since that day everything has hurt me. It hurts both inside and outside your head. Grief manifests itself in many ways because we are not able to do it. We must remain focused so that justice is done to Harry. The family was informed six days after Harry's burial on September 18 that Ms. Sacoolas had left the country.
"We only thought it was a very specific case and we were striving to get Harry's body back from the coroner after the post mortem examination, and we spent a day with him at the funeral directors before having to close the casket," explains Charlotte.
"We spent as much time with him as possible and left him some pieces. Harry loved to drive with the visor up because he liked the air, so he always carried a lip balm with him. I placed his lip balm and one of his Kawasaki keychains on his chest. That was the popularity of this awesome young man. More than 300 people in mourning attended his funeral.
"People say," Oh, you're doing really well. "But we do not deal with it," says Charlotte. 'Niall does not talk about it. As soon as you get out of the camera, you take a break and you have to pick yourself up, because you know that you are going to the next studio to release your story. It must be as ambitious as possible because justice must be done to our son. "
The family met at Charlotte's home when police spoke to them on September 24th.
"It's a small community," says Tim. "There were so many rumors that the Americans probably took it off, so we expected that, but it was still heartbreaking. Losing my son was the worst pain I have ever felt.
"When the officer told us they could not do anything, that there was less than a 1% chance of being sued, it was as if I had lost it again. I remember staying in your kitchen, "he said to Bruce," Oh my God, you just let her go. "
Charlotte continues: "We are not vengeful people, but the longer it lasts and we do not hear anything from it, the more anger goes up. We accepted that it was a terrible accident since the first day. I want to hear his version of the story.
She looks at Tracey. "We still can not understand ourselves as mothers themselves who think it was the right thing to get on a plane and run away."
Tracey agrees. "In our opinion, the purpose of diplomatic immunity is to protect a diplomat in danger so that he can be removed from danger. Anne Sacoolas was not in danger but Harry lost his life. We, Harry's family, need this justice. "