Published: 00:01, 10 August 2015
| Updated: 10:43, 10 August 2015
He survived two tours of Afghanistan serving his country and when he left the RAF, Chris Pollitt was starting a new chapter in Canada with the love of his life, Meagan.
Tragically, the former Howard School pupil who grew up in Rainham, would never realise his dream.
Responding to an alarm at a school while working as a security officer, his car was struck by another vehicle and he was instantly killed. He was 31.
He had only just moved into a house with Miss Rodi, 24, two weeks before he died near Beiseker in the western province of Alberta.
They had met when Mr Pollitt, who was a lance corporal in the Queen’s Colour Squadron, visited Halifax, Nova Scotia, where his regiment was taking part in a parade.
His heartbroken parents have paid tribute to their “amazing son”.
Stuart and Hilary Pollitt got a call from Miss Rodi early on June 15 to tell them the tragic news.
His dad said: “The first thing Hilary said was she feared something like this was going to happen. We were in total shock and the next three hours were just a blur. It’s all a big nightmare.”
Speaking from their home in Herbert Road, Rainham, Mr Pollitt, who owns Rainham Electrics, said: “He was so excited about his new life in Canada.
“He had a new direction in life.”
Their son had met Miss Rodi in July, 2012, when he arrived for a Royal Tattoo event and he fell in love with the medical student.
Mr Pollitt said: “They were soulmates, she was the love of his life and at first he kept going back and forth to Canada and they had a long-distance relationship.
“He loved the country, it had everything he wanted, all the sports he could do, he was excited about moving there.”
A year later their son made the move to Toronto to be with Miss Rodi and before getting his security job he took other people’s dogs for runs to make ends meet.
His dad said: “Everyone liked him and no matter what he did in life he was cool and calm about it. He was amazing and excelled in everything he did.
“He had the ability to turn something bad into something good and he really was liked where ever he went.”
Mr and Mrs Pollitt visited the young couple and spent time with them at Lake Louise near the Rockies.
In October last year, Chris secured a work permit and shortly afterwards got a job with the security firm where bosses thought highly of him.
He hoped his new job would be the first step on the ladder to becoming a Calgary police officer.
Mr Pollitt said: “They were going to promote him as he had told us how well he was doing.
“He was going to spend the rest of his life with Meagan.”
Their son stayed in regular contact with them, his sister Katie and her children, Lauren, 13, Liam, 10, and four-year-old Jacob.
Mr Pollitt said: “He would Skype home and was even teaching Liam how to play the guitar.
“They had only just moved into their house and he told us he was looking forward to painting the place and the picket fence.”
He described his daughter Katie as being the “rock” of the family since they had to break the devastating news after she had dropped her children at school.
She liaised with the Foreign Office and arranged flights so the three of them could travel to Canada two days later.
Mr Pollitt said: “Meagan and her family met us at the airport and she was so brave.
“She’d sorted out the funeral arrangements and helped us with everything, the whole family are grief stricken too. They are wonderful people.”
A funeral service was held at the Chapel of Eden Brook Funeral Home on Monday, June 22, and his work colleagues and friends from Canada went along to say farewell to him. A Union Jack adorned his coffin.
Mr and Mrs Pollitt decided to have their son cremated and have left half his ashes with Meagan and have brought the other half home.
Mrs Pollitt said: “Chris would have liked to have stayed there with Meagan, he had everything he wanted there.
“They had even talked about having children. It’s so sad to think about now.”
A memorial service was also held at Gore Farm, in Upchurch, on Monday, July 20, where his nephew Liam performed two songs his uncle Chris had taught him.
Chris’s friends and colleagues from his RAF regiment also raised a glass to him in traditional military fashion.
Canadian police are investigating the crash.
Mr Pollitt was born in Canada House, Gillingham, on October 3, 1983, and brought up in Rainham.
He went to St Margaret’s Junior School and later the Howard School in Derwent Way.
His parents said he was really keen on sports and was good at karate where he achieved his black belt at an early age.
In Canada, he was in training for a gruelling 125km race across the Rockies.
He later went to the former MidKent College at City Way, Rochester, to study sports and science and joined Kent Police in 2003 before going on to become a PC on the beat in Gravesend.
Mrs Pollitt said: “He always wanted to be a police officer and wanted to join the Calgary Police out in Canada.”
After five years as a PC he joined the RAF and chose to be in the Queen’s Colour Squadron. He completed two tours of Afghanistan, one in 2009 and the second in 2011.
The regiment also carries out ceremonial duties for the Royal family.
His dad, Mr Pollitt, said: “It was a scary and worrying time [his two tours] and we worried we would get that knock on the door or that phone call to say he’d been injured or killed.
“We didn’t want him to come back in a box. We had no control over what happened to him and now he’s been killed in Canada.”
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