Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 13 July 2014

Rathband planned life in Australia

Pc David Rathband was found hanged at his home in Blyth, Northumbria

Pc David Rathband - who was left blinded by gunman Raoul Moat - had planned a new life in Australia in the weeks before he died, his twin brother has said.

The 44-year-old considered leaving Northumbria Police and living in a specially-built home next to his identical twin Darren, who lives in Adelaide.

The grieving twin, who has been arranging a celebratory service at St Nicholas' Cathedral, Newcastle, this weekend, said they discussed the future while David was visiting him.

But just days after returning from Australia, Pc Rathband was found hanging at his home in Blyth, Northumberland.

He was believed to be devastated by the breakdown of his marriage to wife Kath, with whom he had a son Ashley, 19, and daughter Mia, 13, and was struggling to cope with the pain of his injuries and the loss of his sight.

Darren, a police officer in Australia, said: "We planned a future together.

"We looked at buying a house with some land. David could have his own independent living accommodation, with a pool.

"We discussed how we would have his own letter box, his own door, and he could have been independent. He was so positive in regards to that."

Mr Rathband said he did not know what had changed in the days before his brother was found hanging.

"If I knew I could have done something about it," he said.

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