A distraught couple whose son died in a car crash have today said: “It was a tragic accident that should never have happened.”
Dentist Brian Birkett, 26, of Jubilee Gardens, Whitwell, was driving on the A60 Mansfield Road near Worksop when he lost control in wet conditions and hit a road sign.
His parents, Irene and Brian, have now told the Guardian of their heartache for the first time.
“He was a very lovely likeable person, a good chap,” Irene said.
“He cared about others and he was very generous.”
Brian, who attended the School of Clinical Dentistry, University of Sheffield, before getting a job at Robinson and Associates, Newcastle Street, had been out with friends before his car left the road between the junction with the A619 and the Broad Lane crossroads at around 3am on Saturday, July 11.
There were no other cars involved and a taxi driver called the police after noticing that Brian’s car was suddenly no longer travelling behind him.
“The taxi driver stopped his car and said ‘are you alright, are you alright’ and then called 999,” Irene said.
“When the police came round we didn’t believe it, it was disbelief.
“I was just getting ready for work, it was an unbelievable shock.”
Whilst carrying out his studies, Brian shadowed a dentist called Oscar Lopez in Miami, whose clients included stars Mick Jagger, Barry Gibb, Naomi Campbell and Mark Zuckerberg.
He also went travelling around Orlando, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas and New York.
His dad Brian, a former maintenance worker, said: “He did not follow the crowd, he was a leader.”
“He was very independent, a seasoned traveller.”
“If Brian made a decision, he normally did it. He was very determined.”
The wrestling fanatic, who also enjoyed fishing, golf and music, was dedicated to his education, achieving a First Class mark on his dissertation in which he compared the NHS to America’s health care system. The gym enthusiast also lost six stone in just over a year.
More than 400 people attended his funeral at St Lawrence Church, High Street, on Wednesday, July 29 and the family have received around 260 cards.
Irene, an emergency on-call doctor at Derbyshire Health United, added: “It was a very respectable end for him.”