An Irish backpacker who died in Melbourne following an alleged hammer attack has been described by his parents as a precious and much-loved son.
David Greene, from Cabinteely in Dublin, died on Friday morning after nearly two weeks in intensive care. The 30-year-old and his friend David Byas, also from Cabinteely, were injured in an assault in the Australian city on August 26.
Police in the state of Victoria have upgraded their inquiries to a murder investigation.
In a statement, Mr Greene's parents Aidan and Catherine and his brothers Luke and Aidan thanked all those who have offered their support.
"In particular they would also like to express their deep gratitude to the medical staff at the Alfred Hospital for the wonderful care and attention they provided to David, and to the staff at the Irish Australian Welfare Bureau in Melbourne for all their support," said the statement.
"The family have asked that their privacy now be respected as they grieve for the tragic loss of their precious and much-loved son."
The Department of Foreign Affairs has been providing consular assistance to the families of both Mr Greene and Mr Byas. Victoria Police confirmed that Mr Byas has been released from the Alfred Hospital, but it is understood he remains in rehabilitation.
Earlier this week, friends and family of both men gathered at St Brigid's Church in their home town for a special mass. Their priest Father Arthur O'Neill said he would speak to the Greene family upon their return to Ireland.
Mr Greene and Mr Byas were assaulted at a boarding house in Lynedoch Avenue, St Kilda East, in Melbourne.
Victoria Police charged Luke James Wentholt, from St Kilda East, the day after the attack. He was remanded in custody to appear before Melbourne Magistrates' Court on October 8.