It was a cold Saturday night in July 2012, when Ralph and Kathy Kelly received a phone call.
Thomas, their eldest son, had left home just after 6pm to attend a friend’s 18th birthday. He was more excited than usual, because it was that night he was planning on asking the girl he liked to be his girlfriend. He had never done that before, and had spent hours talking it through with friends.
They were meant to meet under the iconic Coke Sign in Kings Cross, but Thomas didn’t know the area particularly well, so got out of the taxi on Victoria Street about 200 metres away.
As Thomas and the girl he liked walked hand in hand towards the main street, an 18-year-old named Kieran Loveridge who had already been involved in altercations all over the city that night, spotted him.
LISTEN: Mia Freedman speaks to Kathy Kelly about the grief of her children on No Filter. Post continues below.
Kieran didn’t know Thomas. He didn’t know Thomas had a younger brother, Stuart, and a younger sister, Madeleine. He didn’t know how much Thomas loved playing the drums and the guitar, or how much he treasured his four pets.
He didn’t know that Thomas just wanted to kiss the girl he was holding hands with, or that he was full of dreams and ambitions.
Keiran didn’t know that when – for no reason at all – he punched Thomas in the face.
And that would be the last thing Thomas ever saw.
When the phone rang that night, it was St Vincent’s Hospital telling Ralph and Kathy that they needed to get to the hospital as quickly as possible.