DIS­GRACE: How can you?

Here is what South Waikato News Face­book mem­bers thought of the at­tack on the Gabolin­scys.

South Waikato News - - FRONT PAGE -

Pub­lic out­rage and sup­port fol­low­ing the ma­li­cious as­sault on Toko­roa grand­par­ents Bob and Mar­garet Gabolin­scy has been over­whelm­ing.

‘‘Peo­ple have blown me away. Our house is like a florist. Ev­ery­one has been very kind. It has been a busy three days,’’ Mrs Gabolin­scy said on Mon­day.

‘‘We had a lovely fruit plat­ter given to us. The well wishes of the peo­ple have been lovely but that’s Toko­roa isn’t it.’’

One of the well wish­ers to call Mrs Gabolin­scy was for­mer South Waikato Mayor Gor­don Blake.

Mayor Neil Sin­clair said he of­fered his sym­pa­thies to the cou­ple when vis­it­ing them on Satur­day be­cause he was out of town on the Fri­day fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent.

‘‘I fi­nally got a ring from Jenny Shat­tock (deputy mayor) and the mayor (Neil Sin­clair) showed up later that day (Satur­day),’’ Mrs Gabolin­scy said.

‘‘I am not proud of what I said to him but I let him have it for 10 min­utes. I saw him as the only one who could fix this prob­lem. I told him that he has no idea what it’s like. Then Bob said (to Mr Sin­clair) ‘you might like to go (now)’.’’

‘‘ He ( Mr Sin­clair) sug­gested that gates be put at ei­ther en­trance of the right of way and I said ‘you’ve got to be kid­ding’,’’ she said.

Mrs Gabolin­scy said Mr Sin­clair promised to close the al­ley­way many years ago.

‘‘Fol­low­ing our dis­cus­sion some years ago, the com­pre­hen­sive study was con­ducted and Weka Place was not iden­ti­fied as a pri­or­ity,’’ Mr Sin­clair said.

Coun­cil as­sets group man­ager Roger Fisher ex­plained the process. ‘‘ In or­der to progress walk­way clo­sure the coun­cil of­ten has to con­fer with as many as six neigh­bour­ing prop­er­ties,’’ Mr Fisher said. ‘‘But it is not only th­ese peo­ple that are sur­veyed. Quite of­ten while neigh­bours wish for the walk­way to be closed, there are many other peo­ple who use the walk­way to get to shops or schools; af­ter all Toko­roa was de­signed with many walk­ways for this pur­pose.’’

Toko­roa Po­lice Se­nior Sergeant Graeme Hill said po­lice were fol­low­ing lines of in­quiry.

Mr Hill said that the al­ley­way is­sue needed to be re­viewed by the coun­cil.

‘‘Al­ley­ways are a crim­i­nal cor­ri­dor. Given what has oc­curred I would hope the coun­cil will ad­dress this is­sue.’’

Speak­ing on Mon­day evening, Mrs Gabolin­scy said the pain of her in­juries had wors­ened.

‘‘It has been very sore to­day and the swelling and bruis­ing has re­ally come through.’’

The Gabolin­scys were at home in Weka Pl on Thurs­day evening when they heard peo­ple walk­ing through an alley that runs along­side their home.

‘‘I went out to close the gates. They had been try­ing to rip the cor­ru­gated iron from the gates. They were smash­ing the iron,’’ Mr Gabolin­scy said. He asked the three men to stop but was sub­jected to ver­bal tirades.

One of the men threw a full can at the back of Mr Gabolin­scy’s head, open­ing a gash that bled pro­fusely. He ran to phone po­lice

– Mar­garet Gabolin­scy as Mrs Gabolin­scy again asked the men to leave.

‘‘One of them, a hefty one, came run­ning up to me and hit me right in the eye and I flew back­wards on to my parked car,’’ she said.

‘‘What has happened to us could hap­pen to any­one. What does it say about a 21 year old hit­ting a 75 year old?’’

The at­tack was the lat­est in a grow­ing list of in­ci­dents in which Toko­roa home­own­ers have en­dured abuse and van­dal­ism at the hands of al­ley­way users.

‘‘The coun­cil must close it. I am not in­ter­ested in the pol­i­tics, just close it,’’ she said.

In June 2006 Mr Gabolin­scy fea­tured on the front page of the South Waikato News want­ing the al­ley­way in ques­tion closed.

Michelle Miller: Sad to know our fam­i­lies are sur­rounded by thugs like th­ese losers.

Sian Reid: Let’s take time to re­mem­ber the poor cou­ple. No-one de­serves to be treated like that no mat­ter what age or who they are. All love and thoughts go out to the cou­ple for a speedy re­cov­ery.

Elise Millar: This is dis­gust­ing. How would those pricks feel if their grand­moth­ers were punched in the face?

James Gar­diner: Who punches an old lady in the face, hon­estly. Cow­ards. Hope you catch them soon.

Ryan Hicks: Tok’s not that big some­one must know some­thing!!

Mil­lie Eti­mani: Toko­roa is not the same any more! Those kids ob­vi­ously have no re­spect for their own par­ents to go as low as to do that!! Dis­gust­ing! GET A JOB MATE! Have some re­spect for your­self ... should be ashamed of your­selves!!!! Giv­ing TOK TOWN a bad name!

Dion Col­lier: When they find out who th­ese losers are they bet­ter name and shame (them)! No PC bol­locks – let the pub­lic know who they are and have the shame in the com­mu­nity squarely sit­ting on their shoul­ders – if you think hit­ting el­derly peo­ple makes you tough, see how you han­dle your name and photo on the front page of the South Waikato News!

CALL­ING FOR AC­TION: Toko­roa grand­par­ents Bob and Mar­garet Gabolin­scy have been over­whelmed by the sup­port from the com­mu­nity af­ter they were as­saulted last Thurs­day night.

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