Poignant tributes left at spot where Sprowston man died in late-night car crash

Tributes to Sam O'Leary left at the scene where he died in a car crash on Wroxham Road, Sprowston Tributes to Sam O'Leary left at the scene where he died in a car crash on Wroxham Road, Sprowston

Monday, March 31, 2014
2:14 PM

Friends and family of a young Sprowston man have laid emotional tributes at the spot where he died after the car he was in struck a brick wall.

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The scene of the fatal accident in Wroxham Road. Damaged garden walls. Picture: Denise BradleyThe scene of the fatal accident in Wroxham Road. Damaged garden walls. Picture: Denise Bradley

The man, named locally as Sam O’Leary, was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident, which happened on the A1151 Wroxham Road, between the Brickmakers roundabout and Fairstead Road, at about 11.15pm on Friday.

Poignant messages, left with dozens of bunches of flowers on the remains of the wall, included a message from Mr O’Leary’s brother Vic, who wrote that he was “a brilliant brother”, and his cousin Karlie who wrote: “You were like a brother to me when we were growing up. I’m going to miss you so much. Sleep tight angel.”

Another read: “The devastating loss of a beautiful boy, with so much life left to live. Rest in peace buddy.”

Flowers at the scene of the fatal accident in Wroxham Road. Picture: Denise BradleyFlowers at the scene of the fatal accident in Wroxham Road. Picture: Denise Bradley

Residents living near scene of fatal car crash describe what happened

The car was travelling towards the city centre, and appeared to have hit railings at a pedestrian crossing and run along the low brick wall of a front garden, before crashing into the corner of the next house’s taller brick wall.

One wheel which came off the car came to rest on the other side of the road.

The scene of the fatal accident in Wroxham Road. Damaged railing at the pedestrian crossing. Picture: Denise BradleyThe scene of the fatal accident in Wroxham Road. Damaged railing at the pedestrian crossing. Picture: Denise Bradley

Firefighters used rescue equipment to release two people trapped in the car. Police said they were also believed to be from the local area, and were taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital with minor injuries.

Mr O’Leary had worked for Masterseal specialist builder in Acle since July 2012, and was due to start an apprenticeship.

Gyles Basey-Fisher, who runs the firm, said: “He was more than an employee to us. He was a friend as well, and he was a very conscientious worker and he will be sorely missed. He was one in a million.”

One resident, Tony Tovell, said: “There was an enormous bang. I went outside, as did several other neighbours. There had clearly been a serious accident and there were two car drivers who had stopped. A couple of drivers, young men, were pretty shaken up and I got refreshments for them. We tried to do what we could but the police took over.”

Crash on A1151 Wroxham Road in NorwichCrash on A1151 Wroxham Road in Norwich

He described the weather at the time as misty.

The A1151 remained closed until 4am while collision investigation work was carried out, and the car recovered.

Did you know Sam O’Leary? Email your tribute to martin.george@archant.co.uk

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