A mother-of-two died following a bicycle crash moments after she took a smiling selfie, her husband has said.
Carmen Greenway, 41, was cycling home after having dinner at a pub to celebrate her mother’s birthday when she hit a bumpy patch of road and lost control.
She fractured her skull and died six days later in St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington, central London, after suffering a cardiac arrest.
Rufus Greenway, 47, said his wife, who was not wearing a helmet, had had a drink before cycling home and may have had one hand on the handlebars when she crashed but was a “very competent” cyclist.
“She had been taking some selfies on the main road, she did that regularly and was media savvy,” Mr Greenway said.
“She was not taking it at the moment of the accident. She was 100m from our house, one hand on the bars, quite relaxed, and probably had had a drink. She cycled that way every weekend and perhaps it’s familiarity breeding contempt.
“She was just having a lovely time, happy to be with her mother for her mum’s birthday. One second you’re happy and then next second it’s a trainwreck.”
He called for legislation to be introduced to require riders to wear a helmet, similar to that in force in Mrs Greenway’s native New Zealand.
Asked why his wife and business partner had not worn a helmet, the audio-visual company director said: “It was just a gross oversight, maybe overconfidence (that she did not wear a helmet).
“It’s unfortunately an unfortunate accident. If she was wearing a helmet she would still be alive.”
Mr Greenway was in Moscow at the time of the accident, which happened around midnight on August 18 near the family home in Isleworth, west London, and flew home to be by her bedside.
He paid tribute to his wife of nearly 13 years as he told how her death had devastated her family and friends.
“The biggest loss is my children have lost their mother at 41. I’ve lost the love of my life. No rows, no arguments, I thought I was in it for 60 years,” Mr Greenway added.
“We were just living an adventurous life together and it was getting better every day. The sanctity of life was being in each other’s arms.”
The couple’s eldest child Finlay, 13, had been a “rock”, Mr Greenway said, while four-year-old Rafferty kept pictures of his mother on the wall in his bedroom.
Mrs Greenway’s mother Sherry Bennett, who was riding behind her daughter when she fell, told the New Zealand Herald: “Carmen is a very devoted wife and adored her children and adored her husband. She’s a special person. She was special to me because she was my only daughter. She’s just got this special quality about her, she just exudes love and happiness.
“She just had this huge personality that was so infectious. People just wanted to be with her, just gravitated to her. Everyone was her friend.”
Mrs Greenway’s funeral was held last month.