Plaque honours infant stolen 40 years ago
FORTY years after Ipswich grieved over the abduction and murder of 17-month-old Deidre Kennedy, a memorial has been unveiled in the park where her body was found.
Family members and members of the community, some of whom were strangers to the Kennedy family, gathered at Bill Paterson Oval in Limestone Park on Saturday.
The plaque is mounted under a rotunda where parents can sit, watching their own children take part in athletics.
The memorial reads:
We cannot stop the hands of time
Nor live again the past
But we shall love and think of you
As long as time shall last.
A life that touches others goes on forever.
Long-time family friend Greg McKimmon led the ceremony in prayer.
Deidre's mother Faye Kennedy said she hoped the plaque reminded parents of the dangers that lurked in the community.
"I hope it creates awareness and lets children know there are some nasties out there," she said.
Mrs Kennedy was amazed by the community support at the unveiling.
"I was just so touched by the attendance there," she said.
"It was so wonderful.
"Some people were total strangers.
"I feel a lot more settled now that that is done, especially since her ashes were stolen.
"I just want to thank everybody who attended yesterday, especially Paul Pisasale for allowing me to have the memorial there."
She also thanked her co-workers at Plainland's Woolworths for catering and serving refreshments.
Mayor Paul Pisasale said the murder forever changed Ipswich.
"As a city we want Faye and her family to know we share her grief and pain," he said.
"The second thing that touched me was her passion to use it as a strong reminder to parents that even if you put your baby in a cot overnight there is always that fear you haven't locked the door up properly.
"It's a strong reminder to look after our kids.
"You can see by the people who attended it had an affect on these people."