A MUM collapsed and died in front of her five-year-old son as she chatted to a friend in a supermarket.
Shelley Cooper, aged 34, fell to the floor while shopping for groceries in Goldthorpe, Barnsley. Her son, Luke, was beside her as shoppers and first-aiders tried to revive her.
Shelley, who had no known health problems, never regained consciousness, and was pronounced dead at Rotherham General Hospital.
Her mother, Lorraine, said she received a phone call from a neighbour who works at the Netto store, saying her daughter had collapsed.
“I went straight round thinking she had just bumped her head,” Lorraine said.
“I was expecting to see her there looking fine. I couldn’t understand it or take it in when they told me they had tried everything but there was nothing anybody could do.
“When I saw her she did not look okay. That image will stay with me for the rest of my life.”
Shelley’s 32-year-old sister, also called Lorraine, said doctors told her Shelley died “the moment she hit the floor”, although medics briefly revived her pulse.
“We don’t understand what happened, she had no health problems as far as we knew,” she added.
Shelley had been talking to a friend about Luke returning to school after the half-term holidays when she suddenly dropped to the floor, her sister said.
“My nephew was led away by staff but he was there long enough to see his mum collapse and see first-aiders cut her clothes away to try to resuscitate her. He knows his mummy has gone to sleep and that she won’t wake up.”
Store manager Andrew Midgley said staff first thought Shelley had fainted.
“A couple of customers with first-aid training rushed to her aid and tried to revive her before the ambulance arrived,” he said.
“We shut the store and evacuated everyone while paramedics worked on her.
“She was a regular shopper here and she was well known.”
Shelley was a very quiet person who kept herself to herself, her sister said.
The tragedy, two weeks ago, came to light after an inquest into her death was opened and adjourned. A cremation service was held in Barnsley last Friday.
Netto staff and customers have raised £700 for the family with a collection at the tills.
The family plans to use the cash to pay for the funeral and to buy a garden bench where Luke can sit to remember his mother as he grows up.