A heartbroken mum has told how she learned about her 21-year-old daughter’s death by reading about it on Facebook.
Mum-of-three Deborah Byrne, 47, from Northampton, UK, was browsing the social network site on May 23 last year, when she saw a memorial tribute to her beloved daughter Brogan Warren.
Scrolling through her news feed, she saw more and more messages – all paying tribute to Brogan.
One friend had written “Gone too soon” while another had said “I can’t believe the news.”
Deborah, who had been relaxing at home, feared the worst had happened to the daughter she called her “glitter girl”.
She said: “I just remember seeing lots of RIP messages.
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“Then a friend of Brogan’s wrote to me “I’m so sorry” in a private message, so I asked what the hell she was talking about.
“She said there had been a horrific crash the night before, on May 22, and she would be there for me.
“That’s when I started screaming. The penny had dropped – Brogan was dead.
“At that moment my heart shattered.”
Frantic for more information, Deborah, also mum to Tianna, five, and Taylia, 23, called her sister, Tricia Byrne, 43, two minutes away in Northampton, where Tianna had been staying overnight.
Bringing Tianna, she rushed to Deborah’s side.
Taylia, 23, and Brogan’s stone mason dad Joff Warren, 49, both living nearby in Northampton, came over, too.
Deborah had called Joff, who she separated from 16 years ago, to say he needed to get to her house, before breaking the news in her kitchen.
Deborah said: “He was devastated, couldn’t believe what I was telling him.”
Joff then told their eldest daughter, Taylia, the news.
“We were desperately trying to get hold of the Northamptonshire Police to get official confirmation of what had happened. But because the crash had happened in Oxfordshire, 45 miles away, Brogan’s name wasn’t coming up on our local police’s system. I couldn’t believe I’d found out about my daughter’s death on Facebook.”
Finally, at 1 p.m. on May 23, an officer from Thames Valley Police – the force which covers Oxfordshire – confirmed Brogan had died, following a head-on crash on the A40 Shrivenham bypass in Oxfordshire at 11:15 p.m.