Child bomb victim 'could be a symbol of peace': Colin Parry spoke of hope at his son's funeral. Rhys Williams reports

COLIN PARRY had no words for the IRA at yesterday's funeral for his son, Timothy, the second child victim of the terrorist bomb attack in Warrington two weeks ago. Instead, he spoke movingly of the joy his son had brought him in his short life and the hope that his death might become a symbol of peace.

Tim, 12, never regained consciousness after suffering appalling head injuries from the second bomb blast in Warrington's Golden Square shopping centre nearly a fortnight ago. He died in a Liverpool hospital five days later.

Yesterday at St Mary's Parish Church in Great Sankey, Warrington, the family was reunited. Mr Parry, 37, and his other son Dominic, 14, proudly bearing Timothy's coffin, his wife Wendy, 35, following, arms clasped around their weeping daughter Abigail, 11.

A photograph of the handsome smiling schoolboy that has graced newspapers over the past fortnight was next to the coffin. On top, sat a white Sea Scout's cap and a blue neckerchief.

The Rt Rev Michael Henshall, Bishop of Warrington, likened the IRA to those who nailed Jesus to the cross: 'How wrong they were. How pathetic their judgement. How indescribably inadequate their cause. How discredited their savagery.'

Mr Parry said the messages of support the family had received, particularly from Ireland, had helped them cope with their loss, adding: 'If my son becomes a symbol of peace and gives everyone a sense of hope after so much tragedy, that will be Tim's unique achievement.'

With the strain of the past fortnight showing in his voice for the first time, Mr Parry went on: 'Tim has touched so many hearts in just a couple of weeks, because, in the eyes of everyone else he was an ordinary boy from an ordinary family in an ordinary town. And on a very ordinary Saturday afternoon, along with Johnathan Ball, suffered an extraordinary and terrible fate.'

His son was blessed with a captivating smile, and knew it, which meant 'he managed to escape imminent parental correction.

'He was periodically prone to challenge our decisions and question our sanity. But for all that, I'd take him back tomorrow. His death has torn an awfully big hole in our lives. The immediate things we struggle with - staring into his room, touching his things, looking into those eyes in that wonderful photograph. But his eyes are still.

'They don't blink, they don't change, they don't move. We no longer hear his voice, his schoolbooks stay shut, his football boots hung up.

'They were 12 all too short years, but they were superb. For that Tim, we thank you. Good night Tim, sleep well, we're with you for always.'

(Photograph omitted)

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