Devastated family pays tribute following death of Sunderland mum-of-five

Julie Snowball who was tragically killed when she was struck by a van in Newcastle.
Julie Snowball who was tragically killed when she was struck by a van in Newcastle.
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A heartbroken Wearside family is struggling to come to terms with the death of a mum-of-five who died after she was hit by a van.

Dedicated Sunderland fan Julie Snowball, 41, was in Newcastle when tragedy struck.

Julie Snowball's sons (from left) Aaron, Dean, Callum and Kyle, with the a shirt from her beloved Sunderland AFC.

Julie Snowball's sons (from left) Aaron, Dean, Callum and Kyle, with the a shirt from her beloved Sunderland AFC.

Julie, a volunteer charity worker, died from serious injuries following the collision near to the Discovery museum in Blandford Square and died at the RVI Hospital.

Eldest son Dean Snowball, 24, said the whole family is still reeling from the shock of losing her.

He said: “At 41 it is just no age at all for something like this to happen. It is just something you would never expect. It is such a really big shock, it’s devastating.

“She was a massive Sunderland fan, she loved the football club. I bought her a Sunderland top which she was laid to rest in.

She was such a loving person and very strong as well

Dean Snowball

“The funeral went without a hitch and she would have been so proud of us.”

Dean and his brothers, Callum, 19, Kyle, 17 and Aaron, 16, helped to carry their mum’s coffin, while sister, Teigan, 13, walked in front of it, for the funeral service at St Matthew’s Church in Silksworth.

Julie, who also leaves behind her mum, Brenda Snowball, and five siblings, had said if anything ever happened to her she would like to be buried alongside her dad, William Snowball, in the churchyard, wishes the family carried out.

Dean, from New Silksworth, who works at Walker Filtration in Washington, said: “My mam was such a kind person, if she had just £5 in her bag and someone needed it, then she would give it to them. She was such a loving person and very strong as well.

“Her home was always gleaming and she had so many photos of us lot up, it was like a photo gallery.

“She was one of those people who is so organised, everything was written down, such as appointments and birthdays, so nothing was missed.”

Julie, who was born and raised in Sunderland, had recently moved to a new home in Newcastle’s Cowgate area.

She was walking in the area of Blandford Square on Monday, August 1, shortly after midnight, when she was stuck by the van.

Police received a call at 12.20am and despite efforts by emergency services to save her, Julie died shortly afterwards at the RVI.

Dean said the family has no idea why Julie, a former pupil at Farringdon School, was there at the time.

He said police are still carrying out inquiries, including gathering CCTV footage, to piece together exactly what happened on the tragic night.

Anyone who thinks they can help with the investigation is asked to contact police on 101 quoting reference number 18 01/08/16.