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Last Updated: Tuesday, 27 March 2007, 16:37 GMT 17:37 UK
Heartbreak at losing 'doting dad'
Peter Woodhams and Jane Bowden
Jane Bowden and Peter Woodhams had a son together
The fiancee of a "doting" father shot dead outside his home has revealed the pain her family has suffered.

Through a statement read out in court, Jane Bowman spoke of her family's heartbreak at the "vicious and callous" murder of Peter Woodhams.

Bradley Tucker, 18, was found guilty of murder at the Old Bailey on Tuesday.

Our beloved Peter, a loving son, fiancÚ and doting father was callously and viciously murdered outside our home.

Our Peter was just 22 years and 34 days old - this heartbreaking day will rule the rest of our lives.

Just seven months ago, Peter and I had everything to live for - we were a young family getting started in life, setting out on our future together.

Peter and I have a son, Sam, and 10 days prior to his death we had celebrated his third birthday.

Peter was the doting dad and Sam the daddy's boy, Peter's "little man", as he would call him.

Sam believes that his daddy is a star now, in heaven

They were inseparable. Peter loved the time he got to spend with Sam, taking him to the park and on adventures, reading him bedtime stories.

Whenever we went on an outing, one of Peter's loves was to buy Sam a teddy bear as a memento.

Peter was not to know how important that small token will mean to Sam in the future.

Sam believes that his daddy is a star now, in heaven. He still believes that his daddy will come back to him.

Sam has been greatly affected by his dad's murder.

Infectious smile

If you asked anybody to describe Peter, they would tell you about his cheerfulness, how he was confident with others and his infectious smile.

As his mum Karen puts it, he not only smiled with his mouth, but his smile beamed at you through his blue eyes.

You could not help but be touched by him.

Peter was a hard worker, working six days a week as a satellite engineer. He had hope for the future. He had an old head on such young shoulders.

He wanted to make a better life for our family, to eventually own our home out of London, get married and to have more children.

Thoughts, memories and questions keep wracking our minds. Why? Why Peter? Why use a gun that is designed to kill?

Murder victim Peter Woodhams with his son Sam
Sam remembers his father as a star in heaven

Peter's murder has affected all our family and friends, not like the ripple effect of a pebble in a pond but like the full force of a tidal wave.

Peter's mother, Karen, hasn't been able to feel anger towards the man who pulled the trigger, but can't understand how one person can ruin so many lives.

She believes this to the extent that the perpetrators have ruined their own short lives too, compassion that I am unable to understand or feel at this time.

My father, John Bowden, took Peter to his heart and under his wing. He looked upon him as the son he never had.

In 2004 my father was diagnosed as having throat cancer, underwent treatment and fought this disease.

Shortly after Peter's death, it was confirmed that the cancer had returned. Dad lost his fight for life on Sunday 14th January 2007.

One minute, Peter was our future and within seconds, he is our past; parents without a son, siblings without a brother, a woman without her partner, and more than anything, a son without a father.



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