The pain will never fade
Reporter: Andrew Rudkin
Date online: 20 February 2013
Little Jamie’s killer gets 10 years
THE distraught parents of little Jamie Heaton say the jailing of Andrew Partington won’t bring them peace.
Kenny and Michelle Heaton’s world fell apart when the explosion caused by next-door neighbour Partington caused the blast that crushed to death the playful two year old.
The couple say they have found no relief in having someone to blame for little Jamie’s death.
Mr Heaton, (37), a car salesman, lived at 11 Buckley Street, Shaw with his wife Michelle (32) and three children.
He had hoped Partington’s guilty plea would help his family move on from their tragedy.
But he admitted yesterday: “Jamie is not here. I was hoping it would give me some closure, but it doesn’t change a thing.”
Partington (28) admitted mansalughter and eight charges of destroying houses - worth more than £1million. He was sent down for 10 years yesterday.
The explosion, on the morning of June 26 2012 occurred when jobless Partington lit up a cigarette after gas had been pouring out of cut gas pipes for 11 hours.
The resulting explosion looked like a “war-zone”, according to one witness.
Mr Heaton revealed his heartbreak at the couple’s inability to bury their son in his favourite clothes — because their possessions were buried in the rubble.
He said: “Our lives have been turned upside down.
“Whatever the sentence it’s not going to bring Jamie back. We’re trying to focus on other things in life, we’re trying to stay positive.”
Mum, Michelle, said: “At the time it was more difficult for Kenny. I was hopeful it was an accident and not a deliberate act, but he found it lots harder.”
In the dock, shaven-headed Partington showed no emotion as he was taken down.
Mrs Heaton expressed her relief at Partington pleading guilty - sparing their own and other families the worry of a trial
She said: “I’m hoping after the sentencing, there will be more happy days. We don’t want any more bad luck. I hope we have a happy future.”
THE couple have started a charity called Jamie’s Something Special, after the tot’s favourite children’s programme.
So far they have raised £7,000, some of which will be spent restoring and buying new play equipment for Bullcote Park in Oldham, where Jamie took his first steps.
They also plan to donate money to help children with autism — a condition Jamie was diagnosed with a couple of weeks before his death.
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