For a certain generation of Londoners, the name Stephen Lawrence is rather powerful. What happened to him is the only reason I knew where Plumstead and Eltham were before I moved to the area - a large reason for my reluctance to do so. I cannot imagine how I would react as a mother if my child had been murdered and then his death had been handled in such a shameful way.
The names Doreen and Neville Lawrence are familiar to anyone who followed the case. However, it is Doreen who was perhaps the better known as she was often the one in public. Last night, we watched the Panorama documentary following Mrs Lawrence in the last year. I was surprised as I expected her to be some political animal [a la Bonfire of the Vanities] but that's not how she came across. In many ways, she is just an ordinary woman. And that's part of the tragedy - the Lawrences were just ordinary British people who's lives were torn apart in the most horrific way and who were propelled into the limelight to get justice in the most extraordinary way.
I hope that the verdicts give Doreen some peace and a few good nights sleep - I imagine she will need that strength to continue the fight for complete justice for her son.