Family in tribute to 'wonderful' ex-Navy officer run down with own car

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An ex-Royal Navy officer killed trying to stop thieves stealing his car was a "wonderful husband, brother and son", his family have said.

Mike Samwell, 35, was killed after chasing intruders at his £500,000 home in Chorlton, Manchester, who broke in while he and his wife Jess were asleep upstairs in the early hours of Sunday morning.

He went outside and was run down as the thieves sped off in his Audi S3 car.

His accountant wife screamed his name and cried for help as he lay dying in the street before neighbours dashed to the scene and an ambulance was called.

Mr Samwell, who served 12 years in the Royal Navy, was pronounced dead in hospital around an hour later.

His family have now issued a touching tribute through Greater Manchester Police.

It said: "Mike's death has made a huge hole in our lives that can never be filled.

"Mike was the most wonderful husband, brother and son. He would do anything for anyone and was an ever dependable and generous family member and friend to so many.

"He was always smiling and sharing his amazing sense of humour. We are so proud of all that Mike was and had achieved.

"Mike was devoted to his family above anything. His wife Jess was his one great love above all things. He was a loyal and treasured friend. We are so grateful to have had him in our lives; he will be sorely missed by all who knew him.

"We have been blessed by the amount of support, condolences and prayers from those who loved him. We have been deeply touched by the kindness of strangers, especially the emergency services, hospital staff and police who did everything they could for him and continue to support us in our grief.

"This is an awful tragedy, but we all want to remember Mike as the special, kind and exceptionally talented man he was and not dwell on a senseless crime which has left us all so bereft.

"While his light may have been extinguished, so cruelly and far too early, the light he shone will continue to travel with us always.

"We hope and pray that other families will not suffer a loss like ours.

"If you have any information that could help the police in their investigations, please come forward with this."

A 21-year-old man has been arrested and bailed by police, who have launched a murder inquiry and are hunting a number of suspects thought to be involved.

Mr Samwell's Audi S3 car was recovered by police badly damaged and abandoned three miles away in the Ladybarn area of the city following the raid.

Detectives have asked for information about a blue five-door BMW 1 Series seen in the area which it is believed was used by the offenders after the incident.

Anyone who believes they may have caught footage of the car on CCTV or dashcams is asked to contact police.

Mr Samwell graduated from the University of Leeds before working in a number of roles for the Royal Navy, including on board a nuclear attack submarine as a weapons officer.

Since leaving the forces he had worked as a programme manager for engineering firm Atkins in Warrington, Cheshire.