Arthur was in Brazil working as an engineer for PDMS, an Aberdeen based oil company. He was scheduled to fly home on May 19, but was asked to stay a bit longer to help with a survey.
”Art was supposed to be on the flight before nine o’clock, but that flight was fully booked so they put him on a later flight. He phoned and said: ‘I’m on a later flight but it gets into Teesside Airport at the same time.”, said his wife, Patricia.
Patricia, is now coming to terms with the likelihood that her 61 year-old husband is not coming back.
”He’s not coming back, is he?” she said. “Yesterday I was really optimistic, today maybe more realistic. I would love him to come back. I just keep hoping he’ll walk round the corner with four weeks’ dirty washing.”
Mrs Coakley went on: “He was fabulous, he really was. You can ask anyone about Art, they will all tell you ‘He’s great’.
The couple met and married within 3 months and has been together for 34 years.
The 3 children, Dominic, 31, Patrick, 29, and Mise, 25, shared their mother’s devastation. “They are distraught. They absolutely idolized and worshiped their father. He worked so hard for his family. All he wanted was to retire. It’s not going to happen, is it?”
Patricia last spoke to her husband shortly before take-off. He called and said “Hello darling, I’m at the airport. I’ve checked my luggage in. I’m going through”.