Schmid Widow Criticises Inquest

The widow of Winchester bomb disposal hero Olaf Schmid has criticised the inquest into his death and accused army chiefs of covering up the "true reasons'' he died.

Christina Schmid, 35, told the News of the World she felt "betrayed'' by the Ministry of Defence.

The soldier - known as Oz - died in Helmand Province on October 31, 2009, defusing his third homemade bomb of the day.

It was just hours before he was due to begin a fortnight's holiday.

The Staff Sergeant was posthumously awarded the George Cross.

At an inquest into his death held in his home town of Truro, Cornwall, Coroner Emma Carlyon recorded a verdict of unlawful killing.

She added nothing could have prevented the 30-year-old's "catastrophic injuries'' sustained when the IED blast threw his body 150ft into the air.

Mrs Schmid told the newspaper:

"The inquest was futile and rushed.

"They didn't seem to want to look into the true reasons for his death.

"All they wanted to talk about was what happened to his body parts when I have always been more concerned about what was happening in his brain leading up to that point.''

She added that a fainting fit the veteran had before his death was caused by exhaustion.

She said:

"I feel betrayed - but I should have learned by now that the MoD is nothing more than an institution which covers its back and does what's easiest.''

The inquest also heard the soldier was rushing to get the job done after being told by his stepson Laird: ``Daddy, time to come home.''

Staff Sergeant Schmid appeared "impatient'' and "frustrated'' following the poignant phone call with the five-year-old on the eve of his death.