‘We will miss you with all our hearts, princess’ - Family tribute to Shannley Leaver, 15, killed in A12 car crash
- Credit: Archant
An 'outgoing' schoolgirl killed in an A12 crash has left a hole in many people's lives, her devastated father has said.
Shannley Leaver, 15, was a rear seat passenger in a Citroen Saxo which collided with a Peugeot 106 near Frostenden, between Lowestoft and Southwold.
The Lynn Grove High School student, who was in Year 11, was pronounced dead at the scene late on October 8.
She lived in Baliol Road, Gorleston with her parents Shaun Leaver and Allison Stone and elder brother Connor, 17.
And her family are still coming to terms with their loss.
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'She was outgoing but also very shy when it came to new people,' said Mr Leaver, 42, 'She just loved life I think, but hated school.
'I think the only reason she went was to see her friends, and she had a lot of friends.'
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He added she was 'always hyper', and that a cheeky photo of her poking her tongue out summed up her fun personality.
'She would meet up with girls,' he continued. 'They would all meet up down the common and that's where they released some balloons for her.'
Shannley had been to her first festival this year - Whitenoise - where she had met some new friends.
And she had hoped to take a beauty course at Great Yarmouth College when she finished her GCSEs.
'She loved her make-up and stuff like that,' said Mr Leaver. 'She would never leave home without it - it was like it was glued to her hand.'
He said on the night she died she had been with her best friend and two others.
The four of them had been on their way back from Ipswich, where the 18-year-old male driver had been to pick up some parts for his car, added Mr Leaver.
He did not learn of his daughter's death until 6am the following day when his partner Miss Stone called him.
The offshore worker was on a rig in Hartlepool at the time, having just returned from working in Holland.
'There was a mix-up between Norfolk and Suffolk police about getting a message to me,' he said. 'I didn't find out until 6am from my other half.
'The rig I was on got a taxi for me from Hartlepool and I came home, five and a half hours in a taxi.
'It wasn't good.
'I didn't believe it at first and to have that time thinking about it...'
He trailed off, but said he has been overwhelmed by tributes from Shannley's friends.
Schoolmates compiled a book of memories about her, along with a wall of remembrance, and around 150 people went to a balloon release and then a
lantern release at the recreation ground.
In a written tribute, her family said: 'We will miss you with all our hearts, princess.'
Shannley went to Wroughton Junior School before starting at Lynn Grove.
The car crash involved four in the Citroen and two in the Peugeot.
Peugeot driver Ronald Gates, 55, of Knodishall, near Saxmundham, Suffolk, was also pronounced dead at the scene.
His passenger and two of the Citroen passengers were taken to hospital but have since been released.
The Citroen driver, an 18-year-old man, is still recovering in Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge.
Police enquiries into the cause of the crash are ongoing.
Shannley's funeral will be at Gorleston Crematorium on Thursday, November 7 at 11.20am.
Mr Leaver said he will be wearing pink, as it was his daughter's favourite colour.
Donations to Brake road safety charity c/o Co-op Funeral Services, 154 High Street, Gorleston.
He has thanked friends, family and work colleagues for their support.
Shannley will be missed by all who knew her, including her parents Shaun and Allison, brother Connor, nanny and grandad, auntie Donna, uncle Grant, Shawn, Alisha, Jaydin, Shasta, Richard, Marea, Ethan, uncle Damien, Auntie Sam, Brandon, Shannon and Maya.