Crash Ruins Wedding Anniversary Plans
Taxi operator Anil Kumar was looking forward to seeing his two daughters graduate from university and celebrating his 23rd wedding anniversary.
But those plans came crashing down yesterday when he died at the Colonial Memorial War (CWM) Hospital in Suva from injuries he suffered in a road accident on Friday night.
His distraught wife, Sudha Kumar, 40, said their three children were waiting for their father to have a late dinner together at their Pritam Singh Road home in Makoi, Nasinu, on Friday. There was no reason for them to worry because in the eight years he had operated his taxi he had never had an accident. He was a careful driver.
When a friend of their father called them at home about the accident they realised something had gone wrong.
Mr Kumar was on his way to Suva when he was hit by another vehicle on Kings Road near RB Patel Centrepoint at 10pm.
A 22-year-old man lost control of his twin cab vehicle which was travelling to Nausori and bumped the taxi. A 19-year-old female passenger was in the vehicle. Both were also taken to hospital. She is in critical condition but he is stable.
Mrs Kumar, 40, said: “I last spoke to my husband at the CWM hospital where he was admitted and was screaming in pain.
“So I hold his hands.
“The last words my husband told me and my children is that he was driving when he saw a vehicle coming towards him and things happened so fast.
“He saw his three children and that was it. This morning he passed away.
“My children were waiting to have dinner with their father.”
Mrs Kumar said around 9pm on Friday night their eldest daughter Shayal Kumar called and spoke to her father.
“Shayal informed him that we are waiting for him to have late night dinner with him. My husband said that he was on his way and he will have dinner with his children,” she said.
Mrs Kumar said while the children waited for their father to come home, around 10pm they received a call from a friend of Mr Kumar about the accident.
“We then rushed to the scene. I saw my husband was stuck in his taxi and asking for help. Police officers and National Fire Authority (NFA) were trying to take my husband out of the taxi.
“My husband was then taken to the hospital and we also went to the hospital,” she said.
Mrs Kumar said her husband was the only breadwinner.
“My husband had never been involved in a road accident and this was the first time an accident happened and he passed away,” she said.
“My husband was very hardworking, helpful, honest, quite, dedicated and nonalcoholic person,” she said.
“He always had dream to see his two daughters graduating from the University of the South Pacific (USP),” she said.
Mr Kumar is survived by his wife, two daughters Shayal Kumar, 22, final year USP student, Anjali Kumar, 20, second year USP student and eight-year-old son Neerav Kumar a Year Three student at Rishikul Primary School.
“My children worked really hard to make their father feel proud because they always say their father always works hard for them,” she said.
Mrs Kumar said they would have been celebrating their 23rd wedding anniversary in two weeks.
“My husband was already planning for our anniversary.
“He was very excited and looking forward to the celebration,” she said.
Daughter Shayal Kumar said: “My father was the best dad.
“He was very generous, honest and fulfilled all our wishes.”
Shayal said she would always miss her dad.
“There is a big void in our life now. It’s like we died with him in that crash.”