herald

Tuesday 19 September 2017

Stephen's family won't sue Cowles and reveal he still hasn't rang them

Stephen Gately's heart-broken family have ruled out legal action against his husband Andrew Cowles.

The bereaved family of the Boyzone star have insisted they merely wanted to clarify some claims made by his former partner in new book The Tree of Seasons.

And solicitor Gerald Kean has revealed to the Herald that the Gatelys have still not heard directly from his ex-lover.

"I know it was reported that he has apologised but he was in Dublin last weekend for the Late Late Show and did not call down to see them or text them directly to say sorry for what happened," he said.

But the family still don't want to take the issue any further, saying they made their feelings clear in their statement last weekend.

"They are not looking for anything and they aren't taking any legal action at this time," he explained.

"They wanted to make a statement to reflect their views. They have done that but they are a very proud and private family. I think it's a one-off thing.

"They were very proud of Stephen and he was very close to his parents and his siblings and his family wanted to clarify aspects of his upbringing."

They feel the disparaging description of Sheriff Street that Cowles made in his foreword couldn't be further from the truth, he added.

"I've got to know them over many years and there is a lot of love in their community and their neighbours and friends in the area all went out of their way to help them when Stephen died. The support they got was amazing," he said.

"But as far as the family are concerned, they are not taking it any further. They wanted to clarify where they stood and they feel they have done that."



BEAUTIFUL

The Gately family finally broke their silence for the first time since Stephen's death after issuing a release to set the record straight about his upbringing.

His parents Margaret and Martin were up in arms after reading Cowles's foreword to Gately's posthumous book.

It described his home of Sheriff Street as one of the "poorest parts of Dublin city" and that it "was a place of civil unrest and terrorist activity" during the 1980s. The Gatelys said they "wish to make it clear that these statements are not correct and do not reflect the views of the family".

They added: "In addition, Stephen himself had no input into the acknowledgement section for the book -- and the family are satisfied that these views do not reflect those of their beautiful son, Stephen."

The 300-page book was almost finished when Gately died while holidaying in his Spanish apartment last October.

The rest of the book was finished by his partner Andrew and also contains forewords by pop star Elton John and partner David Furnish.

Cowles has apologised to the family saying he has "made a huge mistake" and has vowed to have the book reprinted.

mfinn@herald.ie

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