THE father of the young Dublin man gunned down less than 100 yards from his home has told how he witnessed his dying moments.
Dean Johnston (20) was sitting in the backseat of a friend's red Volkswagen Golf near his home at Moorefield Drive in Ronanstown when a lone gunman approached and shot him on May 25 last.
In tonight's Crimecall on RTE1, his parents talk of the horrific moments after the shooting when they lost their son and their lives changed forever.
"Someone told me to run, and I ran up, and the police more or less said you can't go up there. I said, 'That's my son, I'm going where I want' and I saw him in the car and he was bleeding," Dean's father Derek explained.
"I was telling him to keep strong, stay alive and 'I love you'. And then after, I was asked to leave the car, I looked at the ground and I saw a shell, an empty cartridge," he added.
Dean's mother Lorraine tells the programme: "I just said 'no, please, not my Dean, what's wrong? What happened?' And I said 'Where's Derek? Where's Derek?' I said, 'Let me into the car with him, let me in, I want to see him'. And people were just grabbing me and saying, 'He's okay, he's going to be okay, we're going to the hospital now'."
But despite doctor's best efforts, Dean died in hospital.
"I'll never forget that doctor coming in and saying they had done the best they could for our son but unfortunately 'he's passed away'. I just kept telling him I loved him, I loved him, I loved him and I was hoping and praying he heard me," Lorraine explained.
"He's the best son anybody could ever ask for, basically he's my best friend ... first -- then he was my son," said Derek.
"No words can describe it, just literally no words to describe. It's getting harder and harder as the days go on," said Lorraine. "We'd just plead and beg anybody that's seen anything, please come forward on the confidential line and no one will ever know so please, please just catch our son's murderer," she begged.
Crimecall is broadcast on RTE1 tonight at 9.35pm.