The mum of a teen murdered a year ago has told of her ordeal after losing her son to a brutal stabbing.
Tragic Jay Sewell, 18, was set upon by a gang of armed family members who savagely attacked him in Eltham, south east London two weeks before Christmas Day last year.
Heartbroken mum Sharon Louch said she cannot listen to Christmas songs or put up decorations because it reminds her of Jay.
She cannot even bare looking at photographs of her son.
Jay was killed by trainee plumber Daniel Grogan, 20, who became obsessively jealous after finding out he was seeing his ex-girlfriend Gemma Hodder, also 18.
Speaking for the first time shattered Sharon said she feels “nothing but hatred” for those responsible for his murder which happened one year ago tomorrow.
He and four other relatives have been convicted of the senseless attack and Sharon said the one year anniversary of her precious boy’s death has left her crippled.
“I am a wreck and I feel so low,” Sharon said.
“He died two weeks before Christmas last year and everywhere I looked it was Christmas.
“I heard the Christmas songs and just wanted to kill myself.
“To hear that and to see everyone getting on with their lives when you are dying inside is so hard.
“It is all back now and I don’t want Christmas this year – I don’t want it at all.
“I have kids and obviously they want Christmas but I don’t think I could even put one decoration up.”
Sharon says Jay’s death has destroyed her life and she has been unable to return to work after “a year of hell.”
But she has organised a memorial for him on Friday where his friends and family can celebrate his life.
“He was an adrenaline junkie and used to love heights,” Sharon recalled.
“Ever since he turned 18 all he wanted to do was to do a parachute jump.
“He wanted a moped bike when he was 16 but I was worried he would get hurt on the road.
“But that wasn’t to be the main concern in the end. I look back now saying no to him on these things and I wish maybe I said yes.”
Jay, who did not see his dad from the age of seven, had three siblings – Shane, 26, Chloe, 15 and Jake, 13.
Jay had severe dyslexia and struggled academically in school but was immensely popular with peers.
And Sharon has since learned of the positive impact Jay had on others.
“One thing a lot of people have said to me which I didn’t realise before he died was that he had some friends that struggled with certain things like socially and Jay helped them,” she said.
“I have a lot of stories of how much he supported them and that is something I didn’t know.
“It absolutely breaks my heart hearing those stories now.”
Sharon’s life was shattered on December 11 last year when Jay’s life was cruelly cut short.
Jay was stabbed in the chest and legs at around 9.50pm while sitting in a car – before being pronounced dead in hospital 40 minutes later.
He was ambushed by Grogan and his family members who were armed with hammers, knives, wood and an axe.
Jay’s friend was also stabbed but was later discharged from hospital.
Sharon later learned that her son died because Grogan felt “intense feelings of jealously and rejection” towards Jay over his relationship with his ex-girlfriend.
But it has now been revealed Jay and Gemma barely knew each other.
“He was not her boyfriend,” Sharon said. “Jay had met her in the pub on the Friday.
“Jay knew one of her friends and that is how they got introduced.”
The pair clicked but Gemma was forced to turn her phone off because Grogan was sending relentless messages.
By the next day Grogan had found out about Jay before murdering him on the Tuesday.
Jay’s mum also revealed her son had broken up with his on and off again girlfriend two weeks before meeting Gemma.
Sharon said: “The chances are he might have been with her a week or so and then he would have gone back to his old girlfriend because that was what it was like.”
Grogan was found guilty of murder while his parents, Robert and Ann, both 54, of Sibthorpe Road, were convicted of manslaughter.
Charlie Dudley, 26, also of Sibthorpe Road, was also found guilty of manslaughter.
Daniel Grogan’s sister, Francesca Grogan, 30, and her boyfriend Jamie Bennett, 31, both of Sibthorpe Road, were found guilty of violent disorder.
His cousin Liam Hickey, 19, of Crown Woods Way, was found guilty of violent disorder and GBH with intent.
A 17-year-old who cannot be named for legal reasons has also been found guilty of manslaughter.
Sentencing will take place on January 7.
Sharon sat through the trial and said she will never forgive the family.
“What they did was appalling,” she said. “I cried the whole time in court.”
Sharon is now dreading Christmas and said she will struggle to put up even one decoration.
But she said she was so proud of her late son who was described as the glue who held his friends together.
His mum now has only one ambition in life – survival.
She explained: “At the moment I can’t even think past the next hour. I will never heal.
“I lost my dad when I was 19 who I miss and loved dearly. I watched by brother die of cancer in 2012 and I was close to him and miss him to this day.
“But losing Jay… If I can just get through next year that will be a bonus.
“I just have plans to survive.”
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