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GRIEVING Mario Gagliardini lost two friends to Sean Flynn. Then the killer driver took his mother.

Mario caught mum Yvonne Solo in Flynn's arms, and saw her hold his hand as he faced justice at the High Court.

It was the ultimate betrayal for the 19-year-old student, who was struggling to cope with the loss of his friends and his own ordeal in the crash which killed them.

"It tore me to pieces," Mario said.

"When I needed my mum most, she was away sh***ing the boy who caused the deaths of my two pals.

"She and Sean deserve each other. My mother stopped being my mother when she took up with that loser."

Mario yesterday recalled the moment when he first suspected his mother had fallen for the killer.

It was a month after the fireball crash, which Mario and Flynn escaped with minor injuries. Flynn's cousin Paul Ross and friend Christopher Magee both died.

Mario had thrown a birthday party for Yvonne at their home in West Calder, West Lothian.

Flynn was there, despite Mario's anger with him over the accident.

Mario told how he caught Flynn in a passionate embrace with Yvonne. He said: "I saw them in a clinch but they jumped apart when I came into the room.

"I confronted my mum a couple of days later but she insisted they were just friends and denied anything was going on.

"She tried to make out I was drunk and had misunderstood the situation."

A few weeks later, Mario spotted Yvonne's white Nissan Almera parked in an Edinburgh street. He found his mum in a nearby Italian restaurant, with Sean Flynn.

Again, Yvonne claimed she and the killer were just friends. Mario told her she was lying.

Disgusted at the affair, he moved out of the family home. Now he wants nothing to do with the woman he once worshipped.

Mario said: "She was my best friend - not just a mother but a sister. She was everything to me.

"But she picked Sean over me, and when I moved out she couldn't see what the problem was."

Mario confronted Flynn about the affair and was treated with contempt. He recalled: "Flynn was just arrogant and full of himself.

"He told me my mum could do whatever she wanted and was old enough to decide who she wanted to be with.

"He has shown no remorse at all over the deaths. He didn't apologise to Chris's family and deserves what is coming to him.

"The fact he went away with my mum shows how much respect he has for me and my friends.

"How she can choose him over her son is difficult to understand."

Flynn killed Paul and Christopher by trying to race another car in a BMW he bought a few hours before the accident.

The car bust into flames after Flynn lost control and smashed into a lamp-post. He had no driving licence or insurance.

Paul and Christopher were trapped in the back seat and died in the flames.

Yvonne held Flynn's hand last month as he arrived at the High Court in Edinburgh to be sentenced over the crash.

She has since been a regular visitor at Polmont Young Offenders Institution, where her lover is serving three years and nine months.

A police source said: "Despite the jail sentence, the relationship seems to be continuing."

In a letter to Mario written before the sentence, Yvonne admitted flirting with Flynn.

But despite her son's pain, she showed few regrets. Yvonne wrote: "Yes, him and I did flirt around a lot.

"And yes, I never told you I was going to meet him.

"After your reaction when I told you we had kissed on my birthday, I thought I would wait and see if you would get used to the idea, and also if he and I were going to continue.

"I honestly thought you may have been open-minded about us seeing each other.

"But I also realised that him being a friend of yours would be very off-putting to you.

"I did expect you to be annoyed and not comprehend why the two of us would even want to see each other. But I never thought that you would mind as much as you have.

"I don't honestly know if I would have done anything differently."

Yvonne asked Mario: "If the accident hadn't happened, would you still be so angry?

"If it hadn't been Sean driving, would you still be so angry?

"The loss of two lives is more than enough. Why let your feelings destroy yet more lives?

"I am sorry you feel so bitter and angry and hurt and possibly rejected by me. But I have not rejected you, you are rejecting me.

"Two mothers have lost their sons.

"One mother may be facing her son going to prison. And I have lost you, even though you are still alive.

"Nothing is worth a total cost of four lives ruined and their families - nothing.

"I think about you, Mario, and hope that one day you can be civil towards me."

Mario is trying to get on with life without his mother. He has been offered three university places to study marketing.

Yvonne, who works for a travel agent, refused to discuss her affair with Flynn.

She said: "I have no comment whatsoever. You can't possibly know the ins and outs if you haven't spoken to Sean or I."
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jul 11, 2002
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