Treasure moments with your children
THE mum of murdered schoolgirl April Jones has marked the sixth anniversary of her “special little girl’s” death with a heartbreaking tribute.
Heartbroken Coral Jones, 46, reminded parents to “treasure each moment” with their children after her daughter was “brutally stolen” in a moving Facebook post.
Five-year-old April was abducted and killed on October 1, 2012 by paedophile Mark Bridger, who was jailed for life the following year.
She had been playing on her bike outside her home on the Bryn-y-Gog estate in Machynlleth when she was snatched by the killer. Her body was never recovered but police found forensic evidence linking Bridger, 53, to the murder, including DNA fragments in the fireplace of his rented cottage in Ceinws, near Machynlleth.
In an emotional tribute six years on from the tragic murder that shook the nation, Coral has told how “a little girl’s life was stolen brutally, families’ hearts were shattered, a community torn and strangers brought together by a very special little girl”.
She wrote how April’s last day was a “normal day, full of happiness, fun, learning and friendships. “Six years ago today, on the evening of Monday, 1st October 2012, the world felt like it had frozen. Time stopped in that moment as everyone hoped and prayed that April would be found safe and well,” she said.
“The world united in searching for April, but April would never come home.
“A town united to find a local little girl, an amazing community united to find April. A community who will never forget such a very special little girl.”
Coral added: “April loved to go out playing. No parent/child should be scared out the outdoors. Children need fresh air. April had a right to play outside.”
Now, six years on, the grieving mum is urging parents to educate their children on the dangers of talking to strangers and advised parents to teach their children “passwords” that adults can use to let them know it’s safe to leave with them.
“If you do anything today six years on, educate your children on the dangers of strangers and known adults, even people known to them can’t be trusted,” she wrote.
“No child should be denied the right to be outside and playing, children need fresh air and they need to simply be children.
“But, ensure they are safe. Create a password or safe word just for you and your child, ensure they know that if you have asked someone to go collect them that they can ask for the password or safe word.”
● Coral Jones and (inset) her murdered daughter April