Damien Little was a qualified carpet layer, a labourer, and a truckie. He was a successful football player and coach. He has been described as a “much-loved member of the community”, a “doting dad” who sought to be the “perfect father and husband”.
His relationship with his wife has been called “loving and supportive” and he has has been praised for “never saying a bad word against her.”
He is also now the man who killed his two sons.
Damien Little is the man who bought himself a takeaway coffee that he drank in his car alongside a rifle before 6am on Monday morning and then with his two boys Hunter, 4 and Koda, nearly one, he drove at high speed off Brennan’s Whaft in Port Lincoln.
As the community struggles to come to terms with yet another tragic outcome of family violence and South Australia’s victim rights’ commissioner urges people “not to rush to blame”, Damien Little’s family have spoken of how depression gripped him, and friends have said that “someone should have stepped in”.
Damien Little’s parents Sue and Ken have spoken out about how mental health problems plagued their son. The couple have also urged others struggling with mental health to get help.
Sue, 58 and Ken, 67, told The Advertiser of their distress several years ago after their beloved son, “spiralled into a dark space”.
“He was a much-loved member of the community and very much loved by his family … I just don’t think he realised how much people loved him.”
“He was very particular about everything he did. I think he wanted to be perfect — he wanted to be a perfect father and husband. He wanted to do everything right.”
She said that the Damien, the third of her five sons, was a perfectionist.
“He was very hard on himself. He wanted to live a perfect life. ”
But she said that despite a “happy and loving” marriage for nine years to his school sweetheart, Melissa over the past few years he changed.
“Over the past three years he had a bit of a problem, we had noticed a change. When we saw (it) the whole family tried to help him. He had a lot of people offering help. We tried to help him, we all did.”
Mrs Little says that despite offers and pleas of help they fell on deaf ears.