The families of four children who were killed when they were hit by a drunk driver while walking to get an ice-cream in Sydney‘s west say they are “devastated” plans for a commemorative garden nearby have been shelved.
The Abdallah, Sakr and Kassas families wanted the tribute, including four headstones, to be created at Oatlands Golf Club near where the children were killed.
They say they worked with Parramatta Council on the plan for the special garden.
But after earlier rejecting plans, the club said the garden the families wanted was too big and said it has “decided to close negotiations.”
The families say they want the club officials to reconsider.
“We are devastated by the decision of the Oatlands Golf Club Board to end discussions for a modest commemorative garden on the edge of the golf course where our children were killed,” they said in a statement.
“We respectfully ask the Board to reconsider its decision so that our children can be honoured and the community can have a place to remember the Oatlands Tragedy which had such an impact on our nation.
“We love our children dearly and we will always grieve the loss of our beautiful kids. Our proposed commemorative garden simply honours our children.”
The Golf Club said it had discussed plans for a “modest memorial consisting of four small memorial stones, set in a garden.”
But it said all the concepts submitted by Parramatta Council on behalf of the family have been “well outside the scale of what had been communicated as appropriate.”
“Following media coverage in February 2021, and in order to progress the matter, the Club called a meeting on 26th March 2021 with the families, Parramatta Council and Minister Lee and requested support from the families for a memorial of a modest scale,” General Manager Sam Howe, said in a statement.
“This was rejected by the families, and at the meeting the parties indicated that a revised proposal would be provided to the Club for consideration.
“A revised concept, similar in size to concepts previously rejected, was submitted to the Club in April 2021.
“Given the scale of the revised concept, the Board has also rejected it as unsuitable.
“The Board and Management recognise the terrible tragedy caused by this accident, while at the same time recognising our responsibility to the Club and its members.
“In light of there being no support from the families for a memorial that the Board has deemed appropriate to take to the membership, the Board has decided to close negotiations. ”
Samuel Davidson was drunk and travelling 133km/h in a 50km/h zone when he ploughed into children as they were walking and riding bikes on the footpath in Oatlands in February 2020.
Abdallah siblings Antony, Angelina and Sienna, along with their cousin Veronique Sakr, were killed.
Davidson pleaded guilty to four counts of manslaughter and was sentenced to a minimum of 21 years in jail last month.
Source: Thanks msn.com