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Last Updated: Saturday, 21 February, 2004, 13:31 GMT
Service remembers murder victims
June Richardson
June Richardson said it was helpful to meet up with other parents
A service is being held to help the families of murder victims in North East England.

The event, organised by the North of England Victims Association (Neva), is due to take place at St Mary's Cathedral, in Newcastle, on Saturday.

June Richardson, whose son Martin was killed son by 10-year-old Mary Bell three decades ago, is one of the organisers.

She said the service would be a great comfort to people who had lost a child.

Mrs Richardson said her life had never been the same since her four-year-old son was murdered by Bell and said many parents felt the same.

'Great support'

She said: "It is 36 years now. We get life sentences, we have never, ever learned to live the way we used to be.

"We had to learn to live in a different way - one as a mother of children who are still living and another one with all the grief of our past."

She added the service provided a chance for the parents of murdered children to get together and support each other.

"It gets these poor people out of the house and they come to the service because just being with other victims of homicide helps.

"No victim takes grief the same way but they do understand each other and it just nice to be with people who know what you have been through and what you are going through.

"Seeing other people just gives them that little bit hope for tomorrow."

Neva - who have branches on Tyneside and Wearside - organise a service every year.



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