By Nigel Slater 19/07 Updated: 20/07 10:51
THE WIFE of a Vale man who died after jumping into the River Avon had pleaded with him moments before not to do it, an inquest has heard.
Carl Schmidt from Pershore died on May 29 from a hypoxic brain injury two days after jumping into the river at Hampton on the evening of Sunday, May 27.
The inquest heard how, after being invited to a barbecue with friends on the Sunday afternoon, the 47-year-old and his wife Jacqui went for a walk along the river bank while their dogs went for a swim in the river.
Jacqui told the court that Carl told her he was going to join his dogs for a short swim and began taking off his clothes. She told him it was not the right thing to do because it was still daylight.
"He was 47-years-old and not what I would say the body gorgeous," Mrs Schmidt told Coroner Geraint Williams.
"I didn't think it was right for him to be stripping down to his underwear. But he was determined to do so."
Before making his jump, Mrs Schmidt told her husband there was a shallow ridge but he assured her he would dive over it.
"As he jumped I saw him hit his head on a rock," Mrs Schmidt added. "I jumped in straight away and saw lots of blood to his head. I knew he was dead there and then."
Paramedics and police arrived as Carl was pulled out of the river and taken to the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch but he died from his injuries two days later.
The widow also paid tribute to hospital staff for letting her be with her husband in the dying moments before Mr Schmidt's death.
"I'm so grateful for the fact that I was with Carl the whole time,” she said. “The staff at hospital were brilliant, they let me get on to the bed with him while he was in intensive care and I was able to cuddle him and support him while holding his hand."
Worcestershire coroner Geraint Williams gave a verdict of accidental death at the end of the hearing.
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