PC David Rathband comes home to Stafford

The widow of Pc David Rathband was at his funeral in Staffordshire - despite being told by his brother to stay away.

Darren Rathband said his twin, who was blinded by gunman Raol Moat back in July 2010, told him he did not want Kath to be there.

Mrs Rathband split from the former Northumbria Police traffic officer last year, after he grew close to 7/7 survivor Lisa French, 36.

The police officer was found dead at his home last month. And since his death she has been caught in a bitter war of words with his family.

Her spokesman, PR guru Max Clifford, said today: "Darren Rathband contacted Kath through her son Ashley and said he does not want her to go to the funeral and that David would not have wanted her to go.

"But she always intended to go ...her children (said) they very much wanted her to be there.''

"Don't forget Kath was speaking to David right up until the day he died. Although they were estranged, they were still very, very close. They had been married for 20 years.''

Darren Rathband, who is also a policeman, had criticised Kath for missing last Saturday's memorial service in Newcastle, which was attended by the couple's children Ashley, 19, and Mia, 13.

In a statement issued through Northumbria Police, Kath had said she would not attend the memorial but would be at the funeral in Staffordshire and at a special service at St Nicholas' Cathedral in Newcastle on Monday.

Northumbria Police Chief Constable Sue Sim didn't attend the funeral, after Pc Rathband's family asked that no senior officers attend.

The Chief Constable will lead the force memorial service on Monday, March 19 at St Nicholas' Cathedral in Newcastle.

Pc Rathband, 44, who was shot by gunman Raoul Moat in 2010, to his own life at his home in Northumberland, on February 29.

He had battled to rebuild his life after being blinded by Moat and became a national figure after setting up the Blue Lamp Foundation, which helps 999 personnel injured in the line of duty.

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