Mum’s final words to Ryan
Mar 6 2008 by David Himelfield, Huddersfield Daily Examiner
“THE last words I exchanged with Ryan were ‘I love you’ and these words will be with me forever.”
Those were the words of bereaved mother Valerie Gee as her estranged husband Christopher Hawkins was sentenced for the murder of her son.
In a statement read in court, Miss Gee said she still had her son’s ironed clothed hanging in a wardrobe and was waking at 5am – the time Ryan would get up.
She added a corner of her house had become a shrine to the four-year-old.
Miss Gee said: “Ryan was a lively and loving child who would always be giving us hugs and kisses and telling us that he loved us.
“He filled my day with fun and laughter. We played, laughed and life was more enjoyable and bearable with him being around.
“When I heard he had died my world fell apart. I couldn’t and didn’t come to terms with what had happened.
“I remember strangers asking me to formally identify Ryan and I found I was unable to do this.
“I didn’t want to believe he had died. I still don’t believe Ryan has gone.
“Even though it’s five months since Ryan died I find it hard to get on with my life. I’m still getting up at 5am because that’s when Ryan got up.
“I still have all of Ryan’s clothes. They are washed, ironed and hung up as if he is coming home.
Miss Gee added: “Ryan’s death was a massive loss, not just to me, but to his two big sisters, Donna and Natalie.
“Donna will carry the physical scars as well as emotional scars for the rest of her life, and we will all have to deal with the impact of this totally evil act for the rest of our lives.”
In poignant messages on an internet tribute website, devastated Donna added: “Just writing a message Ryan to let you know I am still thinking of you and missing you lots. You’re in my thoughts every second of the day and especially when I go to sleep at night.”
Her sad thoughts were echoed by her older sister Natalie who was away camping with her boyfriend at the time of the terrible incident.
The 16-year-old said: “RIP, little man. You will never be forgotten. Ryan, I miss you so much.
“I don’t understand; my heart breaks even more when another day goes past. All I have left of you is pictures.”