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Ryan’s killers remain at large on day he would have turned 16

By Anne Madden

The grief-stricken parents of a murdered Coleraine schoolboy have made a desperate plea for information about his killers on what would have been his 16th birthday.

Ryan Quinn died after being struck by a train as he fled from a gang in Portrush on January 30 last year.

Last night, on the eve of his 16th birthday, his devastated parents Ivan Quinn and Lisa Kinnaird visited his grave.

His mother, who has been to the graveside every day since his horrific death, said: “I cling on to hope that some day I will get a phone call that his killers will be charged.”

The 35-year-old described her son as “a lovely wee boy who was always smiling”.

“The police have two suspects but they need more information,” she said. “I just ask people to come forward and tell the police what you know, and they will treat the information sensitively.”

Police and Ryan’s parents have made a number of appeals since the murder and a file has been sent to the Public Prosecution Service in relation to a 23-year-old man and a 17-year-old youth. A decision on whether to prosecute is expected soon.

Detective Chief Inspector Ian Harrison, said: “I believe there are still individuals in the community who have significant information about what happened. Anyone who does come forward will be dealt with sympathetically.

“I want to ask them again to look into their hearts and examine their consciences.”

The detective appealed specifically for information about Ryan’s movements between 10.40pm that night and just before 11pm when he was hit by the train. He is particularly keen to speak to the crowd who were in the smoking area outside McLaughlin’s bar. Ryan’s parents have organised a football match in his memory — for the second year in a row. The “Friends versus Family” match will take place from 2-4pm this Saturday, in Rugby Avenue in Coleraine, followed by sandwiches and a prize-giving at the Montra Social Club in the town. They also produced wristbands entitled ‘Justice for Ryan’ to raise money for football strips for the Mountfern Day Centre team in Coleraine.

Nearly eighteen months have passed since Ryan’s death but his mother said their pain has not healed with time. “His sister, Zara, is now the same age he was when he died — she is totally devastated,” Lisa said. “We can’t move on at all. Just not seeing him anymore is so hard. There is still anger and confusion. We can’t grieve properly until we have closure.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact detectives at Coleraine on 0845 600 8000 or anonymously to Crimestoppers on freephone 0800 555 111.

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