PARENTS of victims stabbed to death turned out in force to support the mum of murdered Nikki Allan.
The families came together to mark the 21st anniversary of the schoolgirl’s death – and add their voices to the growing campaign to catch her killer.
They were among more than 100 people who held a vigil for the seven-year-old, close to where her body was found in Sunderland’s East End, on October 8, 1992.
John Johnson, 61, whose son Kevin was murdered in Pennywell in 2007, was among those supporting Nikki’s mum, Sharon Henderson.
Kevin was just 22 when he was stabbed to death after confronting a rowdy mob outside the home he shared with his partner and baby son.
John, of Ryhope, said: “Everyone had a tear in their eye as we all remembered Nikki.
“Sharon managed to compose herself well, and it was nice to see so many people coming out to remember what happened 21 years ago.”
Dorothy Hardy, mum of Simon Richardson, also turned out to support Nikki’s family.
This month also marks 10 years since Simon was killed by paranoid schizophrenic Sean Crone in Red House. He was just 27 years old.
Simon was slashed across the neck by Crone just minutes after the 26-year-old killer had stabbed Ian Lawson, 24, to death on Thursday, October 30, 2003.
Dorothy, 62, of Shotton Colliery, said: “I have known Sharon for 10 years and really wanted to be there for her. She just needs some peace after all this time.
“When my son died, Sharon was there for me, even though she was going through her own pain and suffering.”
Sharon, 48, returned this week to the scene of her daughter’s murder to mark the anniversary. Friends, family and supporters from across the country joined her, laying pink flowers in Nikki’s memory.
The case, Sunderland’s longest unsolved child murder investigation, has received national attention in recent weeks following a reconstruction broadcast on BBC’s Crimewatch show. Northumbria Police have appealed for anyone who, 21 years ago, used to frequent the then-derelict Exchange Building in Sunderland’s East End to come forward with information.
Sharon, of Ryhope, said: “When I saw how many people came along to mark the day, I just couldn’t believe it.
“I’ve always said that if the police can’t get justice for Nikki, then I will.”