THE heartbroken son of a pensioner who died after being knocked down by a council bin wagon is appealing for witnesses to help piece together the last moments of her life.
Jean Eastwood, 65, of Eachill Gardens, Rishton, was crossing an alleyway near a car showroom off Harwood Road when the lorry reversed and hit her at 12.45pm on Monday. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
She walked along the route every day to drop one of her three grandchildren off at playgroup.
Her son, Peter Eastwood, 35, of Butts Mount, Great Harwood, said he couldn't get to grips with the fact his "caring, happy, loving" mum was no longer alive.
He said: "She always cared about other people before herself. She was very bubbly and always happy. She would always make a joke out of everything.
"Mum would always say to me: 'Life is not about having a good hand, it's about having a bad hand and playing it well'. I was very, very close to her. I could tell her everything. We were like mates really."
Peter, a self-employed joiner, appealed for witnesses to the accident to come forward.
He added: "I just don't understand, she walked along that route every day. She wasn't deaf and she was very young for her age, very active. I don't know if it was just a freak accident but she was always so careful about crossing the road and she had her wits about her."
Peter had been out with his two-year-old son Kyle when his father Raymond called to reveal the tragic news.
He rushed to the Royal Blackburn Hospital but en route he stumbled upon the scene of the accident.
Officers were unable to discuss the incident so Peter went straight to see his mother's body. He gave her a kiss, cut a lock of her hair and said goodbye.
Peter added: "I will miss her just being here. You never expect something like this to happen to you but I have to just think of my children now and take care of them.
"I will just miss her being there when things go wrong. She would always make me feel 100 per cent better."
Before retirement, Mrs Eastwood had worked in a pharmacy, on a stall in Blackburn Market and then as a home help.
She had been a resident of Eachill Gardens since 2002. She had many friends there and was described by staff and residents as a loving, caring person.
Sandra Freza, warden of the sheltered accommodation scheme, said: "We can't believe what has happened. Everyone here is really stunned by it.
"She was a generous and honest lady who was loved by everyone. All the residents liked her and she was very popular. It really brings it home to you when a tragic accident like this happens and she will be very sadly missed."
Council leader Peter Britcliffe said: "This is a terrible tragedy and my sympathy goes out to the victim's family. Obviously there will be a full investigation into this matter."
Mrs Eastwood also leaves a daughter Diane, 38, a son-in-law Jonathan, a daughter-in-law Katrina and grandchildren Lucas, four, Kyle, two and three-month-old Ellis.
After the tragedy the green and white Hyndburn Council wagon was removed from the scene by police for testing. It is believed it had its reverse lights and warning siren on at the time of the accident.
PC Mark Royle-Evatt of Accrington Traffic Police appealed for witnesses to contact them on 0845 125 3545
- AT Wednesday night's Hyndburn Council meeting, members stood for a minute's silence in Mrs Eastwood's memory.