London - A grandfather who was fatally stabbed as he walked home from his local pub told a neighbour: "Call my wife because I’m losing it."
Allan Isichei, 69, staggered up the garden path of close neighbour Raj Glover and desperately rang the doorbell for help.
Isichei, who ran a construction firm and used to be a coach at Wasps rugby club, was returning home after reading a newspaper over a pint in the pub in the early evening.
Grover’s son Kevneet, 15, said: "It was a man who was injured and he said, 'Call an ambulance.' He was holding onto the side of the door."
His father asked his wife to bring some towels so they could stem the bleeding. They then laid the wounded man on his back.
Grover said: "He was stabbed twice – there was one on the right hand side below his chest and one on his side. He was trying to go to his house, but couldn’t make it anymore so he came to us."
When Grover asked him what had happened and who was responsible, Isichei replied: "Don’t ask me these questions, call my wife because I’m losing it."
He ran to Isichei’s home in Southall, west London, to find Sandra, his wife of 44 years.
Grover said: "I said, 'Don’t panic, your husband is bleeding a little bit.' I didn’t say there had been a stabbing. I didn’t want to panic her. Her husband kept saying to his wife, 'Come closer to me, come closer to me.' The blood just kept on pouring out." Mrs Isichei, 71, kept telling her husband: "It will be okay, don’t worry, everything will be fine."
Paramedics arrived ten minutes later after the attack on Saturday at about 6.40pm but were unable to save her husband.
Police later arrested a man in his 30s on suspicion of murder. He is in hospital under guard after being treated for minor injuries.
Last night, detectives were trying to establish why such a popular figure in the community was suddenly stabbed to death.
Isichei, who is friends with former England and Wasps rugby star Roger Uttley, regularly played the saxophone in local pubs with a soul band called The Circle. He ran Broadway Construction, based in Ealing, and had three children and four grandchildren.
His mother Philomena Isichei, 92, said she had been planning to go for Sunday lunch with her son who called her on Saturday, saying: "See you at one o’clock." She said: "That was the last time I spoke to him. He was my beautiful son and now I will never see him again."
Isichei was described by regulars at his local pub, The Plough Inn, as a "loving father and grandfather" with a deep love for music.
A woman, who is a regular, said: "He could not have been here for more than 45 minutes. He had one drink, read the paper and left." Another regular said: "He was seen leaving here. Nobody followed him and there were no signs of aggravation at the pub. He made it just halfway down the road and obviously ran into some lunatic there."
The shocking attack came on a weekend of violence. On Friday, Hashim Khan, 37, was stabbed to death in Birmingham. On the same night, three male students, aged 17, from Saudi Arabia, were stabbed and a local boy of 15 sustained a cut to his head after an altercation in Bournemouth.
Their injuries are not life-threatening. On Saturday, a woman in her 60s was killed at her home in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire. Yesterday, a man, 21, was fatally stabbed and four others injured during a disturbance in Maidstone, Kent.
The violence comes amid warnings about super-strong drugs being circulated at festivals following two deaths. On Saturday, a girl, 17, died from a suspected drug overdose at Leeds Festival, while a man, 19, died after falling ill at Creamfields dance festival, near Warrington, Cheshire.