'I just want good to come from this' - mother of murdered Norwich woman Kerri McAuley backs our campaign to raise £10,000 for Leeway
PUBLISHED: 13:17 17 November 2017 | UPDATED: 13:17 17 November 2017
Archant © 2017
She was a caring, fun loving girl with a heart of gold who was killed in the most horrific way imaginable.
And while she could not be saved, it is hoped the memory of Kerri McAuley will help provide a vital lifeline to countless other abuse victims looking to flee a life of violence.
Today, in memory of the “beautiful” Norwich mother-of-two, and with the backing of Kerri’s family, we launch Kerri’s Campaign, a bid to raise £10,000 to help furnish a new safe house opened by domestic abuse charity Leeway.
The refuge will provide women and children enduring a nightmare of violence and abuse with a place of safety to escape to this Christmas and beyond.
Kerri, 32, suffered 19 separate injuries to her head and face following a “sustained and brutal” attack by her former partner and serial abuser Joe Storey, who then left her to die alone in her Norwich home in January this year.
Her family, who should have this week been celebrating her 33rd birthday, are instead getting behind our campaign to try and prevent other tragedies.
Kerri’s mother Lesley said: “This is going to be our first Christmas without Kerri so this campaign is keeping her close to our hearts.
“Its a great thing that’s being done in the run up to Christmas, which is a ripe time for domestic violence.
“I was just over the moon to hear about it. I just thought it was such a good legacy as well for my daughter. I felt quite overwhelmed.
“I think that it’s going to do a lot of good which my daughter would want and which she would love because she was a very loving and caring woman.
“She had a heart of gold and would help anyone. She would be very proud.”
Lesley said the campaign would be something positive for the whole family, but particularly Kerri’s two boys.
She said: “Her boys will grow up proud of Kerri and how she’s managed to get help out there following her horrific death.”
Lesley said she just hopes the campaign can bring light to the darkness that has followed her daughter’s death.
She added: “I just want good to come from this, from Kerri’s horrific death – if it only helps one person out there, which I know it already has, lots more, to get out of a situation where their lives could be at risk from their partners then it can only be good.”
That sentiment was backed by Kerri’s uncle, Steve Roberts.
He said: “It will be a wonderful legacy for Kerri, something positive to come out of something so horrific – to raise funds for Leeway to furnish a new refuge but also to raise awareness of domestic abuse, particularly at this time of year, at Christmas, where it can be on the increase because of family pressures and alcohol etc.
“She would be absolutely delighted. She in her life always helped others, she was very kind, very considerate, very generous and the fact that hopefully the awareness raising at this time of year hopefully will trigger somebody who’s in a domestic abuse situation will listen to her story and say, enough is enough, need to get out and seek the support from the likes of Leeway.”
Storey, formerly of Murrells Court, Norwich, was jailed for life in June after a jury took less than an hour to convict him of murder in what Judge Stephen Holt described as “one of the worst cases of domestic violence to come before these courts”.
The court heard Storey, who had been jailed for offences against previous partners, was the subject of four restraining orders against previous partners, including Ms McAuley.
To support Kerri’s campaign go to the JustGiving page Weʼre raising £10,000 to allow domestic abuse charity Leeway to furnish a new refuge in memory of Norwich mother Kerri McAuley, who was murdered by her ex-partner.
Alternatively you can send cheques, made payable to Archant Community Media Ltd, to Sandra Mackay at Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE.