A Leeds dad has spoken of his shock and heartbreak after his son was killed in a tragic accident – falling down stairs in his own home.
Andrew Meek, 35, is believed to have broken his neck in the fall at his Meanwood flat on Saturday evening.
His father Alex was facing a bleak 67th birthday today, just days after the loss of his eldest child.
But he said the family had been “absolutely overwhelmed at the lovely messages” from Andrew’s friends.
“It’s incredible to think that there are literally hundreds of people that have wanted to express their feelings.
“It’s obviously a difficult time but we are extraordinarily grateful and overwhelmed that people have found the time to do that.
“We have had lots of visitors and there have been heart-rending comments.
“It’s so sad that he’s not here to read them.”
Music-loving Andrew and his younger brother Ian were looking forward to a Pearl Jam concert at Leeds Arena next week.
But now Ian, who bought the tickets as a Christmas present, has revealed his anguish at losing his best friend.
The 33-year-old said: “I just feel numb.
“I don’t think it’s really sunk in.
“Half the time you’re sitting there expecting him to walk into the room, then all of a sudden you remember.”
He described his brother as “a sensitive soul and a big softie” who loved nothing more than watching cookery programmes and experimenting in the kitchen, preparing “weird and wonderful” meals.
His dad said: “Andrew had a love of life. He greatly enjoyed his friendships and loved to see people getting on together.
“He had a loving, caring nature and he loved to be loved.”
The former Allerton High pupil had worked at Hitachi Capital (UK) for the past 13 years – progressing from call centre worker to IT manager.
And Ian said his colleagues had broken down in tears at news of his sudden death.
He spoke to his mum every day and regularly popped round to the family home on King Lane which has an outside tile featuring the name “Meek” alongside a sketch of two adults standing alongside two children.
Mr Meek said their devoted son had been deeply affected when Edwina, now 61, had almost lost her life after suffering a brain haemorrhage and stroke which left her in a coma for around six weeks.
But she “miraculously” recovered and the couple recently celebrated their ruby wedding anniversary.
Mr Meek said: “There were lots of people we hadn’t seen for a long time so a lot of people saw Andrew again and had it not been for that they probably wouldn’t have seen him.”
A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police confirmed a 35-year-old man had been found dead at an address in King Alfred’s Green in Leeds at 8.46pm on Saturday, adding: “The death is not being treated as suspicious.”
The family are unable to make funeral plans until the post-mortem examination has been carried out.