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'It would be a perfect way to honour him' - Heartbroken partner of bridge-fall victim Chris Brookes will name baby-to-be after him

By Alex Ross | Wolverhampton | News | Published:

The heartbroken partner of a man who died after falling from a footbridge has said she will name her baby-to-be after him.

Sarah Jayne Collins, Layla-Jade Brookes and Chris Brookes

Chris Brookes and Sarah Jayne Collins discovered their baby, due in January, was to be a boy two months ago.

But last month, Mr Brookes, aged 22, died after falling from a bridge connecting Wolverhampton city centre and the city's railway station.

It has led to an outpouring of tributes to the popular young man, who already has a two-year-old daughter called Layla-Jade Brookes.

Sarah Jayne Collins and Chris Brookes

Flowers remain close to the spot where he fell from the bridge while a memory walk from Dudley to Wolverhampton on Saturday attracting dozens of people.

Ms Collins said: "Chris always liked the name Chris Junior, and I'd always say I'm not naming him that.

"But given what happens to me it would be a perfect way to honour him."

Sarah Jayne Collins and Chris Brookes

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She added: "We were planning our family home, we'd saved money to buy a house, and we had two holidays to Blackpool and Brean booked next year.

"He loved his caravan holidays.

"It was the start of a family life, but now its all gone away, we're all devastated."

Sarah Jayne Collins and Chris Brookes

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She said Chris, who was an assembler at Elta Fans in Kingswinford, had been out celebrating his brother Craig's birthday before heading to Wolverhampton for the evening.

The group he was with decided to go to Gorgeous nightclub in the city - but Chris decided to go home.

Ms Collins says he was on the way to the railway station when he fell from the footbridge.

Sarah Jayne Collins and Chris Brookes

The walk on Saturday was to raise money for Chris' funeral next week, and for a memorial bench which could be installed at Gornal Crematorium.

Ms Collins said: "It was overwhelming the amount of support that has come in.

"The family are now busy preparing for his funeral and trying to remain strong.

"But it is difficult. Chris was a special person to us all and we're all at a loss."

Chris Brookes' partner Sarah Jayne at the scene with tributes

Chris’ parents Pauline Room and Phillip Brookes were at the walk.

They were joined by his step mothers Julie Turley and Leanne Room along with three brothers Craig and Josh Brookes and Declan Room, who wore football shirts with Chris’ nickname ‘Brooky’ on the back.

The funeral of the former Coseley School pupil, who worked as an assembler at Elta Fans, Kingswinford, will be held on November 29.

The fundraiser website is at www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/ripchrisbrookes

Alex Ross

By Alex Ross
@alexross_star

Chief Reporter at the Express & Star. Everyone has a story - tell me yours.

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