The mother of Ryota Uemura, the 13-year-old boy whose body was found on a riverbank in Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture, on Feb 20, has released a statement to the media for the first time on her son's murder.
"When I saw Ryota's body, a part of me couldn't accept that he was really gone," she said in the statement released by her lawyer on Monday night after a wake for Ryota, NTV reported. "When I saw his gentle little face, I wanted to think that he was only sleeping. Even now I wake up early in the morning and I seem to hear his energetic voice, calling out to me, 'Mom, Mom, I'm ready for breakfast!' But then at the end of the day, I know that he isn't going to be returning home from school anymore. I keep reflecting upon how I often had to leave before he left for school in the morning so that I could get to work on time, and how I always returned so late at the end of the day. I never got to hear about what was going on during his day."
She said that Ryota never let on that anything was wrong and that he was the kind of boy who didn't want to worry her.
Uemura's mother said that on Feb 19 -- the night before his body was found -- Ryota had asked her if he could go out for a little while after dinner. "How could I know that I would never see him again? I hadn't really wanted him to leave, and I wish so much that I could have been more firm in trying to stop him from leaving that night. If I had done so, then this wouldn't have happened, and my child would still be with me. I keep playing that over and over in my mind."
She recalled seeing the wounds all over his body when she identified him, and thinking, "How much suffering did my child experience during his last moments? He must have been terrified. When I think of this, I cannot stop crying."
Regarding the suspects, Uemura's mother said she can't think anything about them and that nothing will bring her son back.© Japan Today