'We've a sense of contentment now Paul is at peace'
The parents of Paul McCauley yesterday marked the anniversary of the attack which claimed his life in the quiet, dignified manner they have shown for the past nine years.
Jim McCauley and his wife Cathy devoted every single day of their lives from July 16, 2009 to caring for Paul right up to his death last month from the dreadful injuries inflicted on him by a gang of murderous thugs.
Jim and Cathy McCauley are still adjusting to the change in their daily routine which does not involve spending hours at the bedside of their son where he lay in a permanent vegetative state for nine years.
Yesterday morning, the anniversary of the attack brought news that the McCauley family had been praying for - movement on what is now a murder investigation with the arrest of 24-year-old Daryl Proctor.
Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph, Mr McCauley said they were hopeful that the justice their son was denied in life may yet come his way in death.
He said: "We have spent this past weeks still coming to terms with Paul's death but we have been buoyed up by an incredible tranquillity that has remained with us since our son died.
"It is hard to explain but we have a sense of contentment knowing that Paul is free from his pain and is at peace.
"We have been given renewed hope too that the investigation into Paul's murder is making progress after our meeting with the Chief Constable George Hamilton and the detective in charge. We are encouraged by what is being done and hope that we will see the day when all 15 of the people responsible for Paul's murder will be brought to court and jailed for a long time.
"I have said previously and I remain convinced that large numbers of people in this city know the names of the people who attacked Paul but they continue to protect them.
"Their nine-year silence and failure to hand over the culprits has turned my son's murder into one of the worst crimes ever committed in Derry because of the length of time the guilty have been able to walk free, but I'm truly hopeful that those days are now numbered.
"Paul did not get the justice he deserved while he was on earth but perhaps he will get it still."