herald

Wednesday 18 October 2017

Did they cry for me ... did my boys scream?

KATHLEEN Chada has described how her sons Eoghan and Ruairi "had everything to live for" but said their potential was "cut down in such a cruel and violent way by their own father who they loved and adored".

The devastated mother delivered a powerful victim impact statement at the sentencing hearing of her husband Sanjeev, who she said had been the boys' "hero" prior to their horrific deaths at his hands.

She brought a picture of Eoghan and Ruairi with her to the stand.

Mr Justice Paul Carney asked her if he could have a closer look at the photograph before she read her statement.

In the dock, Sanjeev Chada looked down throughout his wife's heart-breaking words.

Kathleen wondered how she lives the knowledge of the boys' last moments.

"How scared they must have been. Did they cry for me? Did they scream? Did they know what was happening?" she asked.

BETRAYAL

"The betrayal of their love for Sanj is so painful for me to imagine.

"How can evil such as this have been hidden for so long in a seemingly loving father? How can he be so utterly, utterly selfish? They and I trusted him so totally," she continued.

Kathleen remained composed throughout her address to the court.

She described Eoghan and Ruairi as "bright, happy, sporty, popular, gorgeous boys".

She said that the morning Chada took them, July 28, 2013 he brought her a cup of coffee in bed.

"Little did I know that Sanj intended I never see any of them alive again. I question why he left me behind? I have to live with the belief he wanted me dead as well.

"He just didn't know how - I would have fought tooth and nail for my boys. He even took Eoghan and Ruairi's last moments from me.

"Even though he is responsible for their deaths he got to hold them while they were still warm and then just dumped them in the boot of the car, taking all dignity from them and abandoning them. By the time they were home they were so cold. I struggled to hold them. It broke my heart to have them home with me but not be able to lie between them snuggling as we did so many nights.

"They couldn't even spend their last night at home on their own side of the bed because we had to disguise the damage to Eoghan's head.

"Sanj did not have to bury his children, I did. I stood by that graveside as two white coffins with my whole life in them were laid side by side - big boys now but always my babies."

"I am so very, very proud of my two boys. They touched so many lives in their short ones," she said.

hnews@herald.ie

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