THE grieving daughters of a woman killed by her husband days after their wedding have described her as a "beautiful soul".
Codie Shaw and her sisters say the murder of their mum Dawn Walker – whose body was found stuffed in a suitcase in a field near the home she shared with her partner – has shattered their hearts in to pieces.
"Monster" Thomas Nutt, 45, was last month found guilty of the 52-year-old's murder and was sentenced to life behind bars.
And this week, Dawn's devastated family paid tribute to "the best mum anyone could ask for".
Codie, also speaking on behalf of sisters Kelaina and Kiera-Lee, said: "Last year, mine and my family's heart was shattered to pieces when we received the news that our beloved Dawn Walker had been killed.
"Dawn was a beautiful soul who would do anything for anybody.
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"She would give you her last bit of money even if she was struggling herself.
"She was the best mum anyone could ever ask for.
"She had the best smile and lived her life to the fullest.
"She was selfless, she was funny and she was kind.
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"Dawn was a mother, daughter, nanna, sister, auntie and friend, but unfortunately a monster took her life from her after he had subjected her to years of abuse, both physically and mentally."
Nutt killed his wife in Lightcliffe, near Halifax, West Yorkshire, in October 2021 just days after they got married.
Dawn had wanted to split from her partner after enduring years of controlling behaviour when he hit her on the head and strangled her to death.
Nutt called police several days later to report his wife missing, and even searched the area with Keira-Lee and her one-year-old.
But in reality, Nutt was keeping Dawn's body in a kitchen cupboard before he broke her leg, transferred her to a suitcase and dumped it in some bushes.
He even went shopping and decorated their house for Halloween during this period.
A local resident later found her with a catalogue of injuries, including a black eye and bruising to her neck, body, chest and collarbone.
In memory of their mother, Codie, Kelaina and Kiera-Lee will walk the Yorkshire Three Peaks a year to the day of her death.
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They are raising money for the charity Advocacy After Fatal Domestic Abuse (AAFDA) to help other victims and their families.
"What happened to my mum was heartbreaking and something we will never get over, but doing this challenge exactly a year on from our mum being killed gives us something to focus on and doing this in memory of her, knowing that we could be helping other people, gives us strength," Codie said.
HOW YOU CAN GET HELP:
Women’s Aid has this advice for victims and their families:
- Always keep your phone nearby.
- Get in touch with charities for help, including the Women’s Aid live chat helpline and services such as SupportLine.
- If you are in danger, call 999.
- Familiarise yourself with the Silent Solution, reporting abuse without speaking down the phone, instead dialing “55”.
- Always keep some money on you, including change for a pay phone or bus fare.
- If you suspect your partner is about to attack you, try to go to a lower-risk area of the house – for example, where there is a way out and access to a telephone.
- Avoid the kitchen and garage, where there are likely to be knives or other weapons. Avoid rooms where you might become trapped, such as the bathroom, or where you might be shut into a cupboard or other small space.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse, SupportLine is open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6pm to 8pm on 01708 765200. The charity’s email support service is open weekdays and weekends during the crisis – [email protected]
Women’s Aid provides a live chat service – available weekdays from 8am-6pm and weekends 10am-6pm.
You can also call the freephone 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247.
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