Tragic Hornchurch dad: Find the four men who helped my dying sons 20 years ago

PUBLISHED: 12:00 14 November 2012

James Jones would like to say thank-you to the men who tried to help his sons

James Jones would like to say thank-you to the men who tried to help his sons


On the evening of Friday, October 16, 1992, brothers Mark and Matthew Jones were killed in a road crash in Upminster.

Now, 20 years on, their father is asking the four men who tried to help his sons to come forward so he can tell them in person: “Thanks very much for what you tried to do.”

Mr Jones, 75, of Albany Road, Hornchurch, hadn’t realised anyone had gone to his sons’ aid as they lay in a freezing field that sad October night – until he saw the Recorder’s “This Week in History” page last month.

“I’d never read the story because I was in shock,” said grieving Mr Jones.

“I didn’t read the papers or go to the inquest – I didn’t want to know anything about it.

“I was just reading the paper last month and that story jumped out at me. Then I read it and realised that these four lads tried to support my sons.

“I’ve never thanked them. I just thought I’d like them to know I appreciate what they tried to do.

“If one of these men was to come forward I would tell him myself: ‘Thanks very much for what you tried to do. Thanks for stopping and trying.’”

The front page of the Recorder on Friday, October 23, 1992, told how “four young men crouched in a muddy ditch in freezing weather for 20 minutes, cradling in their arms the two fatally injured brothers whose car had catapulted into an Upminster field.”

Company director Matthew Jones, 27, died at the scene of the crash, while his older brother Mark, 32, died days later in Harold Wood Hospital.

Police at the time believed the brothers’ car may have lost control on an S-bend and skidded into a tree stump before landing in the field.

“Time heals,” said Mr Jones, who lays a wreath each year at the spot where his sons died.

“Even 20 years on, it’s a bit comforting to me to know somebody stopped and tried to help them. I thought that was good of them.”

If you were there that night, or know who was, please contact the Recorder news desk on 020 8477 3878, or e-mail

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