Tragic: Mark and Lucie were having sex at her mother’s house when he collapsed
A grieving widow has spoken of the moment her husband died while they were having sex.
Lucie and Mark Brownlee were trying for a second child when he suffered a catastrophic arrhythmia.
The intelligence analyst’s last words before he died were: “You’ve still got your socks on”.
He was just 37.
Two years later, Lucie, is now able to talk about her horrific experience and dealing with grief.
The 38-year-old, who had a six-year-daughter with Mark, said: “We were trying for a baby. We had lost a baby in November.
“Anyone who has tried for a baby knows there is small window every month during which it is the best possible time to conceive.
“We were at my mother’s house for my grandmother’s funeral. It wasn’t ideal as we were actually in my mother’s bed but we didn’t want to miss out on that window.
“We hadn’t been having sex for very long, we had only just started, when he collapsed.
“His last words to me were, ‘you’ve still got your socks on’.
“I thought he’d collapsed because of a problem with his heart, but it didn’t cross my mind that he wouldn’t wake up.
“I called 999 and did CPR on him for half an hour before the ambulance arrived.
“Paramedics worked on him for 40 minutes, but he couldn’t be saved. I was just in shock. I couldn’t come to terms with it.”
Lucie, a professional writer and creative writing teacher from County Durham, then started to grieve for her husband, who died on February 11 2012, in a way which caused some people close to her concern.
She admits she ‘drank like a fish’ and embarked upon a ‘completely inappropriate’ affair with a plumber in the wake of Mark’s death.
Lucie added: “I drank an awful lot, and I started a fling with a plumber who had come round to do some work on my house.
“It was completely inappropriate, and my friends and family were worried that I wasn’t coping with my grief in the right way.
“But what I have learnt is that there is no appropriate way in which to deal with grief.
“People think there is a right way to grieve, that it should be in private.
“My grief has been chaotic and unruly. There are no rules to it.
“I can be quite matter of fact about what happened, but when I sit down and really think about it, it hits me.”
In April last year, Lucie started writing about her feelings in a blog called Wife After Death.
She said: “I couldn’t write after Mark died. It took me over a year before I felt able to again.
“And once I did, it was lovely, because it was as though I was spending time with Mark every single day.
“He was such a positive person, so friendly and so loving. He was a one off in every possible way, including the way he died.”