THE widow of a popular Sunshine Coast athlete killed in Abu Dhabi last year has vowed not to leave the Middle East until she finds answers to his mysterious death.
More than a year after triathlete Mark Pringle was killed while cycling in the United Arab Emirates city, police have no suspects or witnesses.
Jennifer said the injury that killed her husband – a single wound in the back of his head under his helmet – did not match with an accidental hit-and-run.
“I live here in the hope that one day someone will come forward and give details about Mark,” she said.
“I want people to know that I continue to stand by Mark.
“I continue to live here for now until I am sure nothing more will be done.
“I am always scared but I loved my husband so much ... he can no longer speak for himself so I do.”
Jennifer, who teaches at Raha International School, where Mark ran his swim squads, said she was “tormented” by her husband’s death.
The road he was cycling on before he was hit was a busy one, but Jennifer said it would have been deserted at the time of the accident.
Mark was hit at 5.30am on a Friday, a holy day in the UAE when no one works.
The other two riders who were with Mark heard no screech of brakes, saw no cars and were only separated from Mark for a few minutes.
Mark was found with only one injury, a 5cm hole in the back of his head under his helmet near the brain stem.
Jennifer said there were no marks to indicate Mark had been dragged and when she found her husband’s bike at the police dump a week later his plastic water bottles were still full of water.
The front tyre had been driven over.
Mark was found beside his bike. He had no road rash and had fallen straight to the ground.
Jennifer, who also used to live on the Coast, was an only child and had no children of her own.
Seven weeks after her husband’s death, Jennifer’s father died of bone cancer and she became “completely consumed by grief”.
It was then that she decided to return to United Arab Emirates to encourage a police investigation.
“Mark was my family. My mother and his mother had both succumbed to cancer in the previous two years,” she said.
Mark moved to the UAE to make his fortune. He was popular and overwhelmed with coaching offers. His happy, generous and hardworking nature made him new friends.
Jennifer had to learn to drive after Mark was hurt.
She went to the hospital to be by his side while he was in a coma for 36 days, fighting for his life in the intensive care unit of Al Mafraq Hospital.
It took Jennifer a year to bear to drive to the spot where he was knocked off his bike and eight months to go back to the pool where he trained swimming squads.
Jennifer said his death had affected many lives, including Coast friends who continue to support her “through this unending nightmare”.
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