The heartbroken parents of a Sheffield graduate have spoken for the first time about their loss as his alleged killers appeared in court.
Sheffield Hallam University graduate Thavisha Lakindu Peiris, aged 25, died after being attacked as he delivered a pizza in Southey Crescent, last Sunday night.
On Saturday morning two men arrested by police on suspicion of murder appeared in court charged with the killing.
A 17-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, and 25-year-old Shamraze Khan, of Southey Crescent, appeared at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court.
Speaking from his home in Sri Lanka at the weekend, Mr Peiris’ father Sarath, aged 66, a civil servant, and his mother Vajira Peiris Narangoda, a housewife, told of their heartache.
In an interview with a national newspaper from their bungalow in Sri Lanka, the couple said they thought Thavisha was safe in England.
Sarath said: “We’re a hard-working family and that was one of our famous sayings.
“Thavisha heard it and repeated it.
“He was incredibly thoughtful, kind and mature.
“We all used to say ‘he’ll go far, he’ll do well.
“Everything has gone in a second, 25 years of hard work; all that love.
“I can’t accept such a thing.
“He never had an enemy.
“He was loved by everyone.”
Mrs Peiris, aged 58, added: “We can’t believe what happened. We didn’t know he wasn’t safe in England.
“I was happy to send him there.”
Thavisha also leaves behind an elder brother, Pramod, 26.
His cousin Beena Narangoda, aged 32, said: “I was like an older sister to him.
“He used to come to my house to study English literature with me.
“He was hard-working and he wanted to make something out of his life and he had a great personality: bubbly, positive, sweet-natured.
‘He loved England – the snow, being there with his friends.
“He loved life."
■ Khan and the 17-year-old were remanded in custody.
They will appear at Sheffield Crown Court on November 15.