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Widow tells of grief after Italy motorbike crash

Mike Vercoe, who was killed in Italy in a bike accident, with wife Fay.
Mike Vercoe, who was killed in Italy in a bike accident, with wife Fay.

by Danny Boyle

The grieving widow of a veteran motorcyclist killed in a horror crash in which she was also seriously injured has spoken of her ordeal for the first time.

Just days after battling out of hospital, Fay Vercoe, of West Kingsdown, paid tribute to husband Mike as she laid him to rest on Friday, following the smash in Italy.

About 250 bikers from across Europe followed his coffin, carried in a motorbike sidecar, from a Farningham pub to the funeral of the well-loved 66-year-old, known affectionately as Mad Mike.

In her first interview, 62-year-old Mrs Vercoe, who only left Darent Valley Hospital last Tuesday, said: “Going to Mike’s funeral was a goal I was determined to hit, it was the least I could do for him.

“We were all dreading it, but it was an amazing day. It was absolutely incredible to see the sheer number of people that turned up. Talk about lifting the spirits.”

Mrs Vercoe was riding on the back of her husband’s new Triumph Thunderbird when tragedy struck near Trento, Italy, on September 22, just one week into a trip with the Motorcycle Touring Club of Europe.

She paid tribute to her husband: "Mike was the life and soul of everybody’s party. He loved to dance, which we would do whenever we could, and he was a talented artist.

“But bikes were his true love, he’s been riding since he was 16 and very experienced. He was a happy guy who lived for the moment.”

Two friends travelling alongside them, Colin Morrish and Wendy Pointer from Rochester, also died after the two bikes are believed to have collided head-on with a lorry as they left a tunnel.

  • For more on this story, see this week's GravesendMessenger

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