Tributes to young father Ryan Thomas who died in electricity pole accident
A LOVING young husband and father of an eight-month-old baby died in a tragic accident at work.
Ryan Thomas, a keen sportsman and 28-year-old linesman for Western Power Distribution (WPD), died following an accident involving an electricity pole.
Ryan, originally from Truro and known as 'Smiler', had set up home in Grampound Road with his teenage sweetheart Zara. Their daughter, Maisy, will be eight months old next week.
Zara Thomas, Ryan's wife of two years, said: "He always had a cheeky smile on his face, he would make anyone laugh. Whenever I think of him all I can see is his smiling face – he always seemed so happy. Maisy is always smiling – she gets that from him."
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The couple who met at Truro College ten years ago spoke for the final time when Ryan called home two hours before the accident.
"He rang from work to find out how Maisy had got on at nursery school and to give her a goodnight kiss," said Zara.
Ryan's parents, Trevor and Christine, and older brothers Malcolm and Nigel, said it was difficult to put their grief into words.
Trevor said: "He idolised Maisy, and when Zara was expecting her he told me he couldn't wait to be a father. Zara and Maisy were his life."
Ryan's best friend, Lewis Orient, who was best man at his wedding, remembered Ryan as "the happiest man I have ever met".
He added: "We were thick as thieves, did everything together. I don't play cricket but I would go down to the cricket club with him. He was more like a brother to me."
His mother recalled taking him to the Boscawen Park cricket ground in his pram when he was just two weeks old.
Ryan played for Cornwall Schools, with a reputation as a good batsman and fielder that led him to play for Truro Cricket Club, along with his brothers. He was also a respected footballer.
Truro Cricket Club secretary Roger Heayn said news of his death left members "stunned".
"We just cannot believe it," he said. "He was a lovely lad, very friendly and no one ever had a bad word to say about him.
"It is a tragic loss."
Ryan was at the club from an early age and, apart from a short spell at Perranarworthal, always played for Truro.
Perranwell Football Club cancelled its game against Goonhavern at the weekend as a mark of respect to a stalwart of the reserves.
A spokesman said: "All of us at the 'Well' are still in shock to lose a young man who was everybody's friend. Our love and thoughts at this time are with his wife and daughter, who has not even had a birthday for him to enjoy.
"He was, as many of his closest friends have said, an honest, lovely, funny and caring guy who played the game the way it should be.
"He has been taken from everyone far too young."
The former Penair School pupil worked from WPD's Bodmin depot and knew people throughout Cornwall. His wife described his colleagues as "like a second family".
Mike Rogers, distribution manager for WPD in Bodmin, said: "Ryan was an excellent and much respected employee and a valued member of the team who will be greatly missed."
The electricity pole that Ryan was working on at Pier Lane, Cawsand, on January 16 is believed to have collapsed.
A full investigation is being carried out by the Health and Safety Executive.