It was one of the most horrific car crashes in recent times which left four young children and their mother dead and nearly a month after the fiery road crash in Queensland’s South Burnett, the father of the children has given an emotional interview on what he believes really happened.
James Mcleod alleged that the mother of his children murdered his kids. Aaleyn, six, Matilda, five, Wyatt, four, and Zaidok, two, passed away in the crash, while their mother, 34-year-old Charmaine Harris McLeod, also lost her life.
“They were all that I lived for,” James Mcleod told Nine News Queensland in an exclusive interview on Wednesday evening. “Now, I’ve just got nothing.”
Queensland Police first said the collision happened when a Nissan station wagon pulled out to overtake a truck and was then hit by an oncoming truck on the Bunya Highway near Kumbia. Both vehicles burst into flames, with the driver and three of the children pronounced dead at the scene. Another child passed away en route to hospital.
While the crash was initially treated as an accident, police later confirmed that a suicide note was found in the mother’s purse and was located 200 metres from the crash scene.
“To be let down like this and have my children returned back to me in urns is just the worst feeling I’ve ever endured,” Mcleod said during the interview, holding back tears. “I’m just absolutely gutted that someone that they trusted and loved could do that to them.”
Mcleod said he didn’t know why the mother of his children would want to murder them.
“It’s just a selfish, pointless act,” he added.
According to the report, the couple had been separated for two years and argued constantly about who the children should live with. Mcloud alleged that he rarely saw his children. Nine News Queensland also claimed that Charmaine admitted to struggling financially and emotionally in the lead up to the crash.
Meanwhile, Mcleod said the tragic event was “totally preventable” and said he copes with his grief by visiting places where he shared fond memories with his children.
“I want to fight to make sure this doesn’t happen to any other kids ever again,” he said. “I know the kids are in heaven now and they’re up there causing a muck and they’ll be waiting for me when my turn’s done.”
Shortly after the crash, Kawungan State School, which Aaleyn and Matilda attended, issued an emotional statement on Facebook.
“We are deeply saddened by a traffic vehicle accident affecting the McLeod family from our lower school,” the statement read. “We extend our sincere sympathies to their family, friends and loved ones at this difficult time. Aaleyn and Matilda will be deeply missed.”
Others took to social media to share their condolences.
“Absolutely tragic & heartbreaking news,” one person said. “My condolences to all who know the family & five long big hugs for dad. My thoughts are also with the truck driver.”
Another comment read: “Matilda your smile was so beautiful.”