THE mother of a 21-year-old Chirk man who was fatally stabbed last year has said her son would have supported a new nationwide campaign.
Lisa McNeil said her son Danny Jones would have fully supported the British Ironwork Centre’s (BIC) ‘Save a Life, Surrender Your Knife’ initiative and also vowed to support it herself.
Speaking at a football match in memory of the trainee accountant and father-of-one on Friday, the 42-year-old said becoming part of the campaign was giving her family “a positive focus” following the tragic incident that took place at an Oswestry car park in April last year.
She told the Advertizer: “Danny was full of fun, he was very popular and he loved life. His life had only just begun.
“He would be saying ‘yes’ to this campaign. It’s nice to know he would have backed it as well.”
Although the initiative is still to formally launch, Mrs McNeil has already visited other mothers who have lost children through knife crime in Manchester and Birmingham.
She said: “It is a really good idea. Anything that gets knives off the streets has to be a good thing.
“It has been good to meet other mothers too, to know that you’re not the only one. It is shocking how much knife crime is going on.”
Mrs McNeil’s husband and Danny’s stepfather, Lee, explained the family had planned to do something themselves before the BIC contacted them.
He said: “It is hard, but we don’t want any other parents going through what we are going through, it is something that lasts a lifetime.”
Mrs McNeil added: “We will carry this for the rest of our lives.”
The couple also said they hope their involvement with the campaign will help others to remember Danny.
Mr McNeil, 44, continued: “We are not afraid to talk about Danny. We like to talk about him and we hope others will continue to talk about him too.”
Speaking at the match – which saw Chirk AAA beat FC Oswestry Town 5-1 – chairman of the BIC, Clive Knowles, said he was “pleased” to have Mrs McNeil on board, adding that the pair have been invited to speak to Birmingham City Council’s Social Cohesion and Community Safety Committee.
He continued: “The campaign is going very well even though we haven’t even officially launched it yet.”
The launch is due to take place in Perry Barr, Birmingham, later this month with the unveiling of the first knife bin, followed by the first knife bin in Shropshire being unveiled at the BIC’s base in Aston, near Oswestry.
All knives surrendered as part of the campaign, which is now backed by West Mercia Police, West Midlands Police and Greater Manchester Police, will be transformed to create a giant angel sculpture.