Family’s vow after Greek police reopen inquiry into holiday death

Matthew Cryer
Matthew Cryer
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“wE will carry on – I’m not having something like that happen to my son and not putting it right.”

The determined parents of Matthew Cryer (17), who died on his first holiday abroad, have vowed to never give up their fight for justice after Greek police reopened his case.

“It’s a big breakthrough but we’ve got to be cautious,” said mum Joanne Froud (44).

“In July it will be three years since Matthew died and for the first two the case was open but they didn’t do anything – we’ve got to keep the pressure up.

“Matthew knew right from wrong, that’s how he was brought up, and to treat people fairly and that’s one of the things I think he would say.

“If it was anybody else – he wouldn’t be giving up.”

Matthew was found collapsed outside the Cocktails and Dreams nightclub in Laganas, Zante, in July 2008. It was initially, wrongly, claimed his injuries had been caused by excessive drinking.

A 2009 Chesterfield inquest heard a bouncer pushed Matthew downstairs and punched him in the face.

The coroner ruled he had been unlawfully killed and died of head injuries. But Greek authorities officially closed the case last year.

Now a family lawyer, and the Foreign Office, have confirmed the public prosecutor has been persuaded to reopen after an appeal, pressure from the family and Athens’ Supreme Court.

Dad David Cryer (46) said: “I won’t be happy until somebody is arrested. This is a small step on the way but it’s not good enough.

“It could take years, it could be this year or next or six years.

“We will carry on. I’m not having something like that happen to my son and not putting it right. No chance.

“We’ll just keep campaigning and pushing.”

Not a day goes by when caring Sheffield Wednesday fan Matthew isn’t remembered by his family, who have staged a relentless campaign despite setbacks. Events, memorials and a racing greyhound called Justice for Matt keep his name alive.

“I keep saying I don’t think it allows us to grieve,” added Joanne, of Gaunt Close, Killamarsh.

“It affects everything, how you treat your children in that you don’t let them have their freedoms that other kids their age would.

“Nothing’s going to make a difference for us.

“Even getting them prison won’t bring Matthew back and give us any happiness. It will just be the right thing to do and maybe we’ll be able to feel a bit better.

“We need to do it not just for us but everybody – because one of the worst things is the thought of it happening to somebody else.”

ellen.beardmore@derbyshiretimes.co.uk.