TRIBUTES have been paid to a devoted family man and popular company executive from Sway, named as the victim of a fatal traffic collision in the run-up to Christmas.
Simon Poole (47), who lived in Manchester Road, died after an incident near the Red Funnel ferry terminal at Southampton at around 10.40pm on 16th December.
Earlier this year Simon celebrated his 21st wedding anniversary with his wife Louise, a personal travel consultant with whom he had three children, aged six, 15 and 18.
He was a pedestrian killed in a collision with a BMW X5 driven by a 39-year-old man from Southampton.
The motorist was arrested on suspicion of causing death by careless driving but has since been released under investigation.
Simon was the chief operating officer of WightFibre, which provides fibre optic broadband, phone and television services to homes and business on the Isle of Wight.
Paying tribute, WightFibre CEO John Irvine said everyone at the company was “shocked”.
He added: “Simon was a truly devoted family man. Our thoughts are first and foremost with Simon’s wife and young family at this very difficult time.
“Simon will be sorely missed by his family, his colleagues here at WightFibre, our customers, suppliers and business partners across the island.”
After joining the firm in January 2017, Simon led its award-winning sales, service and field engineering teams, and was responsible for hiring and mentoring more than 30 of its employees.
He was instrumental in WightFibre’s roll-out of its new full-fibre broadband network, which this month passed its first 10,000 homes, and in the company gaining membership of the Institute of Customer Service – a first for the island.
In a statement, the company said: “Simon was extremely popular and well-liked by employees at WightFibre, taking the lead in many of WightFibre’s social and community events.
“He was a strong presence around the office and in the field, making his absence now even more striking.”
Prior to WightFibre, Simon worked at SSE Telecom in Reading and alongside WightFibre CEO John Irvine as UK sales director for Truphone, a global mobile network operator.
Earlier in his career Simon worked in start-up companies including his own which specialised in Blackberry smartphone services.
Simon had joined the Royal Navy straight from school and completed operational deployments to the Falkland Islands and the Middle East.
An inquest into Simon’s death was opened and adjourned at Winchester Coroners’ Court on Christmas Eve. It gave the cause of death as multiple injuries in a road traffic collision.
A provisional date for the full hearing was set for 12th June.
As reported previously in the A&T, Hampshire police have appealed for witnesses to the fatal incident, particularly anyone with dashcam footage that could help the investigation.
A force spokesperson said Mr Poole’s family are being supported by specialist officers.
“Enquiries into the circumstances of the collision are ongoing,” he added.
Those with information should call 101, quoting 44190452028, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.