Family of Japanese man fatally stabbed in Dundalk praise 'kindness' of Irish
The family of a Japanese man killed as he walked to work in an apparently random attack last week have said they hope his death will not create a bad impression of Ireland.
Yosuke Sasaki, 24, originally from Ebina, west of Tokyo, had been living in the country for a year after coming to study English and deciding to stay.
He worked in the National Pen call centre in Dundalk, Co Louth.
While hundreds of people attended a candlelit vigil in the town centre on Monday night to remember Mr Sasaki, his family issued a statement through the Japanese embassy in Dublin.
"We would like to express our sincere gratitude for the kindness the people of Ireland have shown," the Sasaki family said.
"When he was alive, our son spoke about the warmth of the people of this town and his love of Dundalk.
"He came to Ireland initially as a language student and only intended a short stay.
"However, he was touched by the kindness of the Irish people and he decided to work here.
"As a family, we are truly saddened by what has happened, but we hope that this incident will not give Japanese people a bad impression of Ireland."
The Sasaki family paid tribute to ambulance crews, gardai, the National Pen Limited where their son worked, Oliver Morgan who set up the GoFundMe page to help with repatriation costs, embassy staff and Louth County Council who organised the candlelight vigil.
"Finally, we hope that a tragic event like this one will never happen in this country again," they said.
Mr Sasaki died after being targeted in what is believed to have been a random attack on Avenue Road in Dundalk shortly before 9am last Wednesday as he made his way to the office.
An Egyptian man, aged 18, has been charged with murder.
Two other men attacked in separate incidents following the killing are recovering from their injuries.
The Japanese embassy said it wished to extend sincere gratitude to members of the Irish public who have sent messages expressing their condolences.