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Nora's parents have shown such dignity: expert Gamble

Comments: Jim Gamble
Comments: Jim Gamble
Lauren Harte

By Lauren Harte

The parents of Nora Quoirin have been praised for their dignity "in the face of the most awful nightmare" by a leading child protection expert.

Jim Gamble was speaking as Nora's devastated father Sebastien and mother Meabh identified her body after it was found in the Malaysian jungle.

Mr Gamble, a former RUC officer who has been in daily contact with the Quoirin family, said last night that people have held them "in their hearts and prayers" in the days since Nora's disappearance.

"This is simply the most devastating news after 10 stressful and extremely anxious days for the family, who have been dignity personified in the face of the most awful nightmare," he said.

"They have been pitch perfect in the way they have engaged with police and volunteers.

"We all need to respect the fact that they must be given time and space to deal with their grief and come to terms with their loss."

Mr Gamble also warned against "unhelpful speculation" on social media about what may have happened to Nora.

"There are a number of set procedures that will now take place involving forensics and not least the coroner's examination of her body," he said.

"I hope that in the coming days, when the evidence has been gathered, we will learn more about Nora's final journey to where she was found.

"I believe that speculating or second-guessing those experts who are on the ground would be unhelpful and will most definitely do no one any favours.

"The last thing the family need to be listening to now is a lot of speculation about the 'what-ifs', which won't help anybody.

"If we all want to demonstrate that we do have the deepest sympathy for the family then we need to press the pause button and retain an open mind." Mr Gamble said he had been "desperate" for a positive ending that "sadly wasn't to be".

He added: "I've gone to bed at night and thought of Nora and in the morning I have been checking my news feed, a pattern which I'm sure has been replicated across the country.

"You always believed that there would be some information, and even when the harsh reality hits you are still deeply saddened and shocked."

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