British woman, 59, dies in snowboard tragedy

She was airlifted to hospital but never regained consciousness and died in
hospital, just a week after her 59th birthday,

David, her husband, said: “One minute everything is fine, you’re all enjoying
yourselves, laughing and joking.

“The next minute Sandra was unconscious and never came around.

“I’m absolutely stunned, we all are. We’re struggling to understand how it
happened because it was an innocuous little fall, which makes it so hard to

Mr Thompson, a managing partner at a solicitors’ firm, added: “On the Monday
we went up the mountain, had lunch and went up to the top to do the easier,
blue run and said ‘We’ll have an easy run down and just enjoy it.’

“Sandra said to me ‘You go ahead and I’ll catch you up’. I went ahead and
waited but when I looked back I couldn’t see her.

“My youngest son, James, was snowboarding with her and she just went up a
small rise and toppled backwards and hit her head on the snow.

“She was wearing a helmet and my son was with her within 10 seconds, but she
was already unconscious.

“He waved for me to come back and I walked back thinking her snowboard had
broken or she’d had a minor fall.

“But by the time I got there they had already called the air ambulance.

“They spent about half an hour with her on the slope, putting adrenalin and
oxygen into her, but we could tell it wasn’t good. It was horrible.”

Mrs Thompson, from Chandler’s Ford, near Southampton, Hants, was airlifted to
Innsbruck University Hospital, where she was put on a ventilator.

Doctors kept her on life support for almost 48 hours but tests later revealed
she was suffering from severe swelling at the back of the brain, known as a
subdural hematoma, and there was nothing that could be done for her.

The accident took place on February 6 but details have only just emerged.

Mr Thompson said: “She was always there for myself and the boys. The house
feels so empty without her.”

The couple met in Cornwall, where Mrs Thompson was born, in 1969 and they
married in 1977.

Mrs Thompson worked as a teacher in Cornwall and Cheshire, before the couple
moved to Hampshire in 1982.

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