Sunday, 1 August 2010

A Tribute To Liam O'Brian (1995 - 2008)

I often talk about people who inspire me. Though not all inspirations come from the stage, some of the most amazing people are hidden in the shadows, and you don't even have to meet them to be moved by their presence or story. So please read this blog and take a little time to think things over and absorb the story. It certainly moved me.

Tomorrow - Monday 2nd August 2010, marks the 2nd anniversary of the death of Liam O'Brian, whos life was stolen from him at just 13 years of age. I never did meet Liam or even know of him 2 years ago. I in fact stumbled across his tribute page whilst looking for a friend on Facebook. Reading the tributes to Liam really moved me. I am not ashamed to say I probably cried a bit too. His short life was filled with so much happiness, not only which he brought upon himself but also to others. The memories people had of him were amazing to read, it really tears your heart in two, to know that such a fantastic person had their life cut short in such a horrible way. Liam himself sounded such a wonderful guy, full of energy... you know, the sort of person who could give anyone a lift if they were feeling down. I didn't feel I could just close the window, of that page and walk away having been so deeply touched by his story and the love and friendship shown by those around him so left a message of my own which lead to me receiving a lovely reply back from Liam's mum.

Liam was a victim of the shocking and sadly growing wave of knife crime this country has seen in the last few years. The exact circumstances surrounding what happened are not clear and never will be. What saddens me however is that somebody felt the need to take the life of a fun loving, innocent boy for no reason at all. What justification is there anywhere in this? Its not big, it doesn't make someone look good and if there was a conflict, such violent actions solve nothing at all. It just shows up some people for what they are - sick and twisted cowards. Though even these people have families, they too are human and that means they feel pain, be it emotional or physical. So why do they feel the need to inflict this upon others? It is just horrific.

What I have seen as a result of Liam's death, is the strength that his family have shown. They are united, strong loving people. I have become friends with Liam's mum Sharron and Liam's cousin Jack, both who are extraordinary people who I admire so much. The courage they show every day to keep going, and to keep those around them going strong is amazing. Further more their efforts to keep Liam's memory alive is fantastic. Had it not have been for these efforts I would never have made two new friends or heard all about Liam.

The thing is I can't just sit here and accept what has happened. We need to make a change remember Liam was just 13 years old, with a whole life ahead of him. Too many people have lost their life in this way - and we can't just let this keep happening time and time again. I know we will never live in a perfect world, but I don't think it is unreasonable to dream of better times, and I am sure that with a little unity we can make this happen. Ok, I appreciate the world will never be perfect, in fact far from it... but lots of small positive changes all add up.

I know a fair few people read this blog, though I will never know quite how many people it reaches and just who read it. But I ask everyone who does to take a moment to think, and if you can make a change for the better that's all I ask of you. Maybe there is nothing to change in yourself, but we all have the ability to influence others. Maybe if you just tell people about this blog - to open their eyes to the world we live in i(Just like reading about Liam changed my views) it could help. I don't have all the answers, what I do know is we have to, as individuals do what we can to change things. We can't have children like Liam losing their life in this way, SOMETHING HAS TO CHANGE!!! If we can all work together to make the world a better place... even if its just a small change we have done Liam's memory the justice it deserves.

Remember - I am not asking to to do this for me... I want you all to do it for Liam.

I deliberately didn't go into too much depth about Liam on a personality level as this video (linked below) made by his sister Lily beautifully sums up Liam's life. Please watch it. Its a fitting tribute for a wonderful person.

Feel free to leave comments or whatever on this blog. You don't have to be a member to leave a comment.

Rest in peace Liam xxx