PARENTS of a South Yorkshire student left fighting for life after his body was found in a water-filled ditch after an attack are keeping a bedside vigil in hospital.
Daniel Whiteley, aged 19, of Darton, Barnsley, was found with serious injuries in Platt Fields Park, Fallowfield, Manchester, in the early hours of Tuesday.
He had multiple injuries to his head and body and is in a critical condition in hospital.
His mum and dad are staying in Manchester while medics battle to save him and yesterday his younger brother was taken to see him in the intensive care ward.
Police had struggled to identify Daniel, a first year English student at the University of Manchester, for 36 hours until officers found a set of keys in the ditch.
They made contact with his family and informed them of the attack.
A spokeswoman from his former school – Queen Elizabeth Grammar School in Wakefield – said: “The QEGS community are deeply shocked by this incident.
“Clearly, all of our thoughts and prayers are with Daniel and his family and we sincerely hope that he makes a full and speedy recovery from his injuries.
Yesterday Greater Manchester Police arrested an 18-year-old woman and two men, aged 21 and 26, on suspicion of attempted murder. They remain in police custody awaiting questioning.
Police believe Daniel had got into an altercation at takeaway shop Krunchy Fried Chicken a few hours previously after leaving a nightclub.
They are trying to piece together his movements.
Det Insp Terry Crompton, from Longsight CID, said: “We have now been able to identify this injured young man and contact his family, who are being supported by specially trained officers.
“A team of detectives remain dedicated to this case.
“We are determined to establish the facts so we can provide Daniel’s family with some much-needed answers.”