WITHERIDGE FAMILY BREAKS SILENCE – BITTER BUT HEARTFELT STATEMENT FROM HANNAH’S SISTER
then murdered with David Miller on the Thai island of Koh Tao has launched a
bitter attack on the internet linking to the ‘Anoymous’ group which has launched cyber attacks against the Thai Police and advocated a boycott of the
Thai government to push the murders under the carpet she gives links to the ‘Anonymous’
video her attack was prompted by a poster to a story about Luke Miller, the latest Briton to die on Koh Tao saying ‘Thailand is the most beautiful country in the
a lion, or tiger… beautiful to look at, yes… but get too close and they will
tear you apart and feed you to their young. My point being that aesthetic
beauty can lure you into a very dangerous trap,” she wrote.
and viewed life as cheap and complains of corruption and had suggested to her that she got over her grief.
below (unaltered) or go direct to the link here.
“So, as some of you may have already seen- there has been
another death of yet another British National on koh tao. I wasn’t going to
post anything, not until I logged on here this morning to see that a friend had
shared the link warning people not to go there… it wasn’t the sharing of the
link or the warning that triggered this lengthy status, as I hope people do
share these things and try and warn people not to go… it was the ignorant
comment someone had made about how Thailand is ‘the most beautiful place in the
world’ that frustrated me this morning.
“Aesthetically, on a postcard or
photograph, maybe… However, literally… I have to disagree. Lots of things
‘look’ beautiful. You only have to consider a lion, or tiger… beautiful to look
at, yes… but get too close and they will tear you apart and feed you to their
young. My point being that aesthetic beauty can lure you into a very dangerous
Since Hannah was taken from us,
I am continually asked
whether I will warn the World about the dangers of Thailand… I am asked if I
will warn people because I might just ‘save someone’s life’.
comment serves as a perfect example of why I would be wasting my time. People
can be ignorant and many, probably the majority, have very short memories.
I have logged in to facebook and seen statuses made by people
who know both Hannah and I, who have gone out there anyway. They think it won’t
happen to them… Well, guess what? Neither did we. No one is immune. “
Many thai’s hate westeners and they have little to no regard
for human life. I don’t say this lightly, or without reason. Let me share a few
facts with you about this ‘beautiful’ place you speak of…
Many of the thai people have no regard for human life. My evidence
for this statement: firstly, some quotes of the things said to my bereaved,
heart broken family by the judges and court officials at the trial of the two
* “why are you here? Why do you care? She is dead already”
* “why are you so bothered? Just go home and make another
* “why are you making such a fuss, she will be back in 30
something else, she may have better luck next time”
Would it surprise you if I told you that the thai’s view
drug possession as a more serious offence than rape or murder? Or that the vast
majority of the thai police force are corrupt?
What if I told you that when we
went to Thailand to bring Hannah home, we were offered the opportunity to go to
the Royal Thai police headquarters for an ‘official update’… but that, on
arrival, we were taken into a large room, left for 5 minutes before the door
opened and around 200 journalists were allowed into the room and we were
ambushed by this mob of hungry journalists shoving cameras in our faces…
thai police chief had no intentions of giving us an update… after all, the
bungled investigation meant he had nothing to tell us. The invitation was so
that he could make money out of our misery. The press had paid him generously
for 5 minutes to capture photographs of our family. The photograph on this post
serves as evidence of this:
|The photo Laura linked to|
“What if I told you that since we lost Hannah there have been
many more suspicious deaths on koh tao. You probably haven’t heard of them all,
as not all were British Nationals. The deaths, where possible, are covered up
as suicides and accidents. This would have happened with Hannah, if it had not
been for the hideous brutality of her passing.
|Luke Miller latest casualty of Koh Tao|
I highly suspect that with this
latest tragedy, the thai’s will say that it was an accidental death caused by
drugs. Hiding the truth and offering a story that suits, is something that they
do often… My thoughts are with Luke Miller’s family and friends.
What if I told you that I have had many death threats from
thai people since they murdered my sister? That they defaced photographs of me
saying that the killers had only done ‘half the job’… what if I told you that
people commented on these photographs saying things like ‘there is still time’,
and ‘tick tock tick tock’. What if I told you that I have been sent crime scene
photographs? What if I told you that I have been chased in my car?
What if I
told you that the thais offered us ‘compensation’ to try and keep us quiet?
Obviously we were absolutely appalled and told them to shove it.
What if I told you that I am now frightened of my own
shadow? That I am constantly looking over my shoulder? That I am exhausted, but
frightened to sleep because of the nightmares? I miss my sister desperately. My
heart is heavy and my mind is tired.
Still think Thailand is beautiful? If your answer is still
‘yes’ then I would suggest you watch the following:
Below is the Witheridge family statement after Burmese Zaw Lin
and Wai Phyo were convicted and sentenced to death.
|Burmese sentenced to death|
“As the trial concludes and the verdict is delivered, our
family, once again, find ourselves in the path of a whirlwind of emotions and
difficulties. In these challenging times, we try to concentrate our efforts on
remembering our beautiful Hannah for the fun, vibrant and incredible young
woman that she was.
Had her life not been tragically and unnecessarily cut
short, she would now have completed her Master’s degree in Speech and Language
therapy and would be about to embark on a fulfilling and worthwhile career. She
would have gone on to make a significant difference to the lives of many.
On the basis of Hannah’s dedication and passion for Speech
and language therapy and the excellent feedback she received during her
placements, the University of Essex has introduced an award for outstanding
excellence in clinical placements in her memory. It will be named the ‘Hannah
Witheridge Award for Clinical Excellence’. Hannah will be the first recipient.
As a family, we are touched by this beautiful tribute to Hannah as the hard
working, dedicated young woman that she was.
The past year has served as an unimaginably impossible time
for our family. We have found the trial process extremely difficult and our
trips out to Thailand, to attend court, made for particularly distressing
We found listening to proceedings very challenging and we
have had to endure a lot of painful and confusing information. We now need
time, as a family, to digest the outcome of the trial and figure out the most
appropriate way to tell our story.”