Around 1800 people including the Premier, politicians, police, personalities, pet, parents and kids today pounded the 3.5 kilometres of pavement from Woombye to Palmwoods in the annual Day for Daniel walk.
What began as a simple walk, attended by 90 people, to focus attention on the 2003 disappearance of 13 year old Daniel Morcombe, has now spread to a national day of action to raise awareness of child safety involving over a million people and over 2000 schools.
The discovery and recovery of Daniel Morcombe’s remains together with the arrest and charging of a person with Daniel’s murder in August has generated additional interest in this year’s Day and Walk for Daniel.
Participating in the Walk today, Premier Anna Bligh said,
“Like so many others I have worn red for the Day for Daniel in years past but this year more than any, I think the finding of Daniel’s remains, and the loss of all hope that we would find Daniel alive, I think it’s a very important moment to remember and show support for Denise, Bruce and Daniel’s family. So it is terrific, there is a sea of red here, and I expect to see a lot of red in the streets of towns and cities right across Queensland.”
The Premier also praised the Morcombe’s involvement in raising the awareness of child safety and their ongoing role in the education process.
“I am very pleased that Bruce and Denise Morcombe accepted roles as ambassadors for child safety in our schools. They have done a mighty job in schools right through the state and I know from many people that their visits to our schools have been very successful. We are working with the Foundation now on curriculum in time for implementation next year in a number of year levels across primary schools. So out of all of this tragedy we hope that some very strong lessons are learnt and that we can keep more children safer in the future.”
For the Police Commissioner Bob Atkinson there have always been two burning questions. Where is Daniel? and Who is responsible? In acknowledging that this year there are potential answers to these two questions, Commissioner Atkinson reflected any personal satisfaction to the acknowledgement of the many that have been involved in both bringing a person before the courts and in locating Daniel’s remains.
“It’s the people involved in the investigation and many, many officers who worked tirelessly for years processing, examining, investigating thousands and thousands of leads and pieces of information from the public. I must say that all of us are very pleased that this year we are in a different place and space than we were last year. This year we have a situation where the matter is now in the criminal justice system and where that will resolve itself and we will have the result of that in the fullness of time. Now at least we are able to say to Bruce and Denise we know now about Daniel and we know where he was and we have found his remains and you will be able to have them back as soon as that is possible. So these two answers are what we did not have last year or the years before.”