A GRIEVING mum has paid tribute to the “amazing” dad of her children, who died after falling from cliffs.
The body of Karl Carson, 26, from Boldon Colliery, was discovered at the bottom of cliffs at Marsden just after 1am on Sunday, July 6.
He had earlier attended an engagement party at the Marsden Grotto pub, where police had been called to the car park to deal with a disturbance.
Karl, from Boldon Colliery – who played for Wearside League outfit Boldon CA – was placed in a police vehicle, but the circumstances of how he came to be found at the foot of the cliffs are part of an ongoing Northumbria Police inquiry.
Former partner Laura Nisbet, who he first met when they were at Boldon Comprehensive School together, and their two children, Leah, five, and Oliver, four, are heartbroken.
Laura said: “Even though I know he is gone, I still expect him to come through the door or ring me up and say ‘right, where are we going with the kids today?
“When the police knocked on the door and told me what had happened, I didn’t believe it, I didn’t believe one word they were saying.
“We had all been out on the day of the party, swimming and for a meal – the whole thing just didn’t seem real.”
Laura and Karl split three years ago but remained good friends and were working on rekindling the relationship. The 26-year-old, who is also mum to Gabriella, one, said: “We had been together since we were 12 years old after meeting at school. He was so funny, a class clown.
“He was really popular at school and loved his football and cricket.
“When I was 16, I fell pregnant with our first child which we lost.
“It devastated both of us, but then we went on to have Leah and then a year later, Oliver.
“He was just an absolutely amazing dad, the kids were always spoilt – even Gabriella who he treated as his own and who she looked on as a father figure.
“Everyone who knew Karl has been left devastated by what has happened, but for the kids, it’s like they have lost not just their dad but their best friend.
“They are missing him so much, we all are. His loss has left a huge hole in all our lives.”
Laura Nisbet has joined four other families – known as the Cruse Crew – who are trying to raise £30,000 in the next 12 months to help charity Cruse Bereavement to set up a children and young people’s bereavement support service.