The family of murdered British backpacker Hannah Witheridge did not fly to Thailand to hear the guilty verdict and death sentence handed to Myanmar nationals Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun, but released a statement. Here it is in full:
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 experiences.
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.