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Today (Friday 1 July) 28-year-old Joe Baldwin pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of father of three Charles Neeson.
Following his conviction, 49-year-old Mr Neeson’s children and wider family have issued the following statement: -
“At a young age me and my siblings are having to face a life without our dad. Not because we are coming to terms with an illness or being able to prepare ourselves for it but because of the actions of one man that has single-handedly disrupted our lives forever.
“Not only are we having to come to terms with the huge hole that has been left in our lives but we now have the responsibility that comes with that too.
“We are all grieving, looking at family pictures and reminiscing but at the same time having to sort out legal paperwork, taking phone calls, filling out paperwork, sorting through possessions and dealing with finances. At our ages no one should be planning their parent’s funeral. With every tear there is another responsibility to deal with a death, not of normal circumstances. Our grief is having to be put on hold to endure the process that comes along with an investigation.
“The grief doesn’t go away no matter how much you try. It’s hard to say goodbye to anyone you love who is going away for a period of time whether it be a holiday or work but then they come back. With a death they are never coming back.
“The actions of one man has changed the rest of our lives. We will never be able to make my dad a grandad, if any of us get married he will not be there at our wedding or to see us move into our first house. All moments that parents are supposed to be there for, to cherish and reminisce into old age. Our dreams and his memories are overshadowed by the image of him lying in the hospital bed.
“Our dad was loved and cherished by many and he will be forever in our hearts.”