A mum’s final act as she lay dying in hospital after being burnt alive along with her three children has been labelled heroic.
Hannah Clarke suffered burns to 97 per cent of her body after it is alleged her rugby player estranged husband Rowan Baxter covered her and their children Aaliyah, six, Laianah, four, and Trey, three, in petrol and set fire to their car during the school run.
Baxter, who trained for the New Zealand Warriors in the NRL, then killed himself by stabbing himself in the chest.
Eyewitnesses saw Hannah jumping from the burning vehicle in flames shouting “he poured petrol on me” before a neighbour rushed to her aid.
She was rushed to the Royal Brisbane and Women’s hospital where she died later on Wednesday evening.
But before she died she managed to use her final breaths to give police a full statement about what had happened.
Family friend Simon Farmer, who was with Hannah in Intensive Care, took to social media to praise his friend’s courage.
He wrote: “She hung in there … Until the last heartbeat brought a tidal wave of grief and anger.”
“You should all know how strong she was, she fought so hard.”
Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll praised Hannah’s incredible bravery moments before her death at a vigil over the weekend.
He said: “Right through to her passing, Hannah showed amazing courage and heroism, ensuring that she gave our police and emergency services at the scene a detailed statement of the horrific events that unfolded, leading to the death of her three children and ultimately herself.
“Hannah’s determination to provide our police the information they needed to ensure justice should be served truly encapsulates the sort of person Hannah was. She was strong, she was determined, she was courageous.”
Clarke’s family have branded their estranged son-in-law “scum” and a “monster” – and it has now been claimed she suffered decade-long abuse and feared for her life days before being killed.
Hannah had planned to write a new will just days before her death, her heartbroken mother has claimed.
In an emotional with ‘A Current Affair’ in Australia, heartbroken mum Suzanne said: “She said to me only last week, ‘Mum should I do a will?’
“‘What happens to my babies if he kills me? Because he’ll go to jail for murder, who gets my children?’
“She said: ‘I want you and dad to have them or Nat. I don’t want his family to have them.'”