The family of a Milton Keynes-based police officer who died in a road accident as he was on his way home from a Christmas Day shift have paid tribute to his ‘enormous heart’.
PC Daniel Clayton-Drabble, aged 24, died in a single vehicle road traffic incident on Boxing Day as he drove his blue BMW 320 Sport on an unclassified road between Whittlebury and the A5 back to his home in Stowe.
The family, in a statement issued by Thames Valley Police, said: “When Dan was taken from us so tragically on his way home from shift on Boxing Day morning, our worlds were torn apart. At a time in his life where he had so much to look forward to and was so happy, his loss could not have seemed more cruel.
“He was a normal 24-year-old who was compelled to face all sides of life sooner than would have been the case, had he not followed his life’s ambition to be a police officer.
“He worried and he cried but, above all, he cared and he would never have chosen a different path. From the moment he donned a police hat and tutu at the age of three, there was never any doubt he would one day be a hero to so many. In our eyes, he was the bravest and kindest police officer in the world but in truth, he walked the path that all of those who choose to serve walk. We were as proud of him as he was of his profession.
“He was lucky enough to be surrounded by a team who were inspirational and supportive friends as well as colleagues he knew would always be there for him. We are truly grateful for the compassion and support they have shown to us in what is the most awful of times.
“As parents, we are in the depths of despair but the support shown has been overwhelming and wherever he is now on duty, we hope he will recognise the love and admiration so clearly felt by those who knew him.
“Dan always tried to face everything with a smile, he was never happier than when bringing a smile to the faces of those around him. His heart was enormous and his love for those that he cared for was immense.
“He cherished his time with us, his sister, her husband and two nieces who he adored beyond reason. We were so pleased for him to have found the love of his life and he and his fiancée were planning what would have been the brightest of futures together.
“We have all lost our shining star and the world will never be the same again.
“Whilst we are so grateful for the flowers we have already received, going forward we ask that anyone who would like to show their respects could kindly do this in the form of donations to the Henry Allen Trust in Dan’s name, a local charity that was dear to his heart.”
Northamptonshire Police are appealing for witnesses to the accident at about 7.35am on December 26 to call the Drivewatch Hotline on 0800 174615. The police indicent number is 58 of 26/12/2018