The father of slain Australian student Chris Lane delivered a heartbreaking eulogy to his son on Wednesday as hundreds gathered to mourn at his funeral.
Peter Lane told mourners that the senseless act of violence that stole his son away from him was making the tragedy harder to cope with.
“When someone as young as Chris loses their life it’s always a tragedy, but when someone’s life is lost for no purpose or reason, it makes it that much harder to accept,” he said.
However, Peter Lane said that a helpful lesson from his son was making things slightly easier.
“He had an amazing maturity about life. He understood it wasn’t always fair, but he knew nothing was gained by hanging on to it, and in part that’s what I’m using to help me now,” he said.
Peter Lane added that “for most of the time in the USA, Chris had two families” — one in Australia and one in the U.S.
He said that when he saw Chris last he was working on moving to the next stage in his life — building a career and starting a family with his girlfriend of four years, Sarah Harper, who draped an Oklahoma flag over his coffin.
“He was clearly in love,” Lane said.
“As Sarah’s father said, they were like an old married couple, if you took one somewhere, you took both,” he added.
Peter Lane said he regrets the fact that he “never quite caught up” with his son on his final day, but shared the heartbreaking final words he told his son: “I’m very proud of how you’ve turned out.”
On Tuesday, a White House spokesman said President Barack Obama is praying for the family and friends of Chris Lane.
“As the president has expressed on too many tragic occasions, there is an extra measure of evil in an act of violence that cuts a young life short. The president and first lady’s thoughts and prayers are with Chris Lane’s family and friends in these trying times,” spokesman said in a statement to the Sunday Herald Sun.
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