Forever Young England

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July 30, 2009 by David Gillaspie



News from England arrived with a guest.  It touched home.

“The story is pretty straight forward.  I’ll read if from the paper.

‘A Cambridge man charged with two attempted murders in a vicious street brawl in the city centre appeared in court yesterday.  Karl Eldin, 18, from Glebe Road, denied attempting to murder Alexander Lloyd and Ian Watters outside the Shell garage in Hills Road on September 4 this year.

At Norwich Crown Court Eldin also denied two offences of causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

Watters, from Blenheim Close in Shepreth, was charged with wounding and with causing grievous bodily harm to Eldin’s father Bakri Siraj-Eldin on the same date. He too denied the charges.  Both men also denied a further charge of violent disorder.  They were given conditional bail and are due to reappear in court on January 9.’

It doesn’t sound good and gets worse.

‘A young man suffered terrible injuries after being stabbed in the heart during a brutal street fight, a court has heard.  Alexander Lloyd, 22, is unable to speak or feed himself and is likely to need round-the-clock care for the rest of his life as a result of the attack outside the Shell garage on Hills Road in Cambridge on September 4 last year.

Bakri Siraj-Eldin, 65, and his son Karl Eldin, 19, both formerly of Glebe Road in Cambridge, are accused of attempting to murder Mr Lloyd, from Cambridge, and his friend Ian Watters, of Shepreth.  The father and son also stand accused of grievous bodily harm against the two friends and of violent disorder. They denied all charges on the first day of their trial at King’s Lynn Crown Court on Wednesday.

Prosecution barrister John Farmer said: “It is only through the fact that Addenbrooke’s Hospital is less than a mile away that Mr Lloyd’s life was retrieved at all.”

In his opening remarks for the prosecution, Mr Farmer told the court that Mr Lloyd and Karl Eldin had long been enemies.  He said Mr Lloyd and Mr Watters were at the garage on Hills Road on September 4 when they saw Karl Eldin stop at traffic lights in his own car. Mr Lloyd approached him and challenged him to a fight.

Karl returned to the garage with his father, who came armed with a Swiss Army knife.  Mr Farmer said witnesses confirmed that the father stabbed Mr Lloyd in the heart with the knife, almost killing him.

He added: “Mr Watters tried to intervene and received a stab just below the ribs on the left-hand side.”  He retaliated by kicking the father to the ground. Karl then picked up the knife and stabbed Mr Watters in the head.  Mr Watters recovered from his stab wounds but Siraj-Eldin still suffers from his injuries.

The court also heard from Mr Lloyd’s girlfriend Chloe Brown, who said that in November 2002, 10 months before the stabbing, Siraj-Eldin had threatened to kill Mr Lloyd.  She said they had met him in Cambridge city centre and he told Mr Lloyd: “You beat up my son. I’m going to kill you.”

The case continues.’

Alex is my wife’s cousin.  We met him at his care center.  His aunts visit once a week, his parents more often.  I saw him once.  The nurse said he was having a good day, but needed a few moments before he could see us.

Alex rolled up in a chair.  His attendant left him with us in the family area.  The appearance of his contractured body didn’t make sense.  He looked like he’d been compressed like a magician in a magic box, like he would unfold at the given signal.  But he won’t.  

His parents built an extra room on their house so he won’t be institutionalized the rest of his life.  He can’t speak, but one day he might.  He can’t hold his head up, but with therapy he may.  We sat together and talked.  He flashes a look of recognition.  He knows what’s happened to him?  He knows we’re here?  Something?

His life and his families lives are forever changed by the events of one day.  A young man using his fists runs into an older man with a knife.  The stab wounds on his victims spell out intent. 

How do you walk away from conflict?  Slowly at first.  It takes practice.  Alex will never have a chance to make his world better; never tell others the important lessons he learned by walking away.  He will be the twenty two year old in the family pictures forever.  They are the one’s left to encourage us to walk away.  So do it.  Walk away until you find a better solution to your conflict.”  


Those take practice, too.  Start now.      




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