But after she had answered the questions and thanked the police and those who sent presents for her son, 11 months old when his father was murdered, she failed to find the words to convey the emotions she felt. She bowed her head and fought back the tears, repeating 'I just . . . I just . . .' before falling silent and being helped away. Cameras clicked remorselessly.
She had already made it clear how she felt about the man who killed her husband and attempted to murder three of his colleagues. 'To call them animals would be an insult to animals, they are just evil psychopaths.' No sentence under law - and it was clear what she meant - would be enough to punish them, she said. 'All this talk of peace, as long as there are people like Magee and O'Brien and their supporters in court today, there will never be peace. They have got no emotions, they just go out and kill.'
Her husband, who had always wanted to join the police, had been on one of his first patrols as a North Yorkshire Police Special. The following day he was due for an interview with Cleveland Police.
Constable Sandy Kelly, who survived four bullets from Magee, one of which is still inside him, spoke of his 'feeling of helplessness' that the two men they stopped in a routine check could be IRA terrorists. One bullet lodged in the radio handset he was using. 'I realise how lucky I am every day,' he said, holding the handset against his ear for the photographers.
Constable Mark Whitehouse, who with colleague Constable Susan Larkin, pursued the two terrorists while hearing over their radio the screams of PC Kelly, said: 'It was a sound I had never heard before and I would not care to hear it again.'Reuse content