South East Wales

Tributes to Merthyr van 'fall' victim Jason Banfield

Jason Banfield
Image caption Jason Banfield's family said he had "a heart of gold"

The family of a man who died after apparently falling out of the back of a van have paid tribute to "a hardworking person who was loved by everyone who knew him".

Local man Jason Banfield, 38, died after the incident at 12:55 BST on Friday at the roundabout by the Linde factory on the A4054 at Troedyrhiw, Merthyr.

The driver of the white Iveco Daily panel van has been assisting police with their enquiries.

Police are appealing for information.

Mr Banfield, who grew up in the Gurnos and Galon Uchaf areas of Merthyr Tydfil, leaves his partner Claire and daughters Asia, seven, and Ebony, three.

Claire said: "He was very proud of his daughters...and would bend over backwards to help anyone without a second thought."

His parents Margaret and Alan said: "We will miss him greatly and the wonderful chats we enjoyed."

They added that his twin brother Chris is "devastated by the loss of his best friend and soul mate".

'Heart of gold'

Manchester United fan Mr Banfield had recently raised money for Alzheimer's charities by taking part in a sponsored walk.

In a statement issued via South Wales Police, his family said: "The whole family is devastated by this tragedy.

"It leaves the family and friends with a huge void that will never be filled. No-one ever had a bad word to say about Jason - he had a heart of gold.

"Jason was the kind of person who left a lasting impression on everyone he met."

South Wales Police are still appealing for information following the incident, particularly about the movements of the white Iveco Daily panel van.

A spokeswoman said: "The vehicle would have had wood sticking out of the rear during most of that journey and police are also asking for any information on the whereabouts of that wood now."

Witnesses are asked to contact the roads policing unit on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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