Grandfather grateful for 'closure' after drug-driver appeal
NO AMOUNT of jail will ever bring back Shaun Zagar or his beautiful son and daughter, Kaleb and Zara.
But the children's grandfather takes some grain of comfort in a fairer sentence being handed down next time someone's selfish decision inevitably tears apart another family.
Andrew Zagar and his wife Julie have spent the past year fighting to get Malcolm Joseph Harris's sentence appealed and waiting for the court's decision.
It has prolonged what was already, and what will always be, the most traumatic period of their lives.
"It's like writing a book. You have to have a beginning, middle and an end," Mr Zagar said.
"It's finished for us now. We won't pursue it any further."
The Zagars have witnessed the best and the worst of human nature through all the sleepless nights.
More than 10,000 people have signed petitions calling for Harris to receive a tougher sentence.
"We campaigned for it, but we couldn't have done it without the help of (Members of Parliament) Kevin Hogan, Thomas George, John Williams and Brad Hazzard," Mr Zagar said.
"Businesses and people in the community, here and abroad, couldn't believe the sentence and have supported the petition.
"And our close family friend, Amanda Chance in Brisbane, did all the hard work of making the online petition.
"There are a lot of people out there with heart."
Mr Zagar said he could rest somewhat easier knowing the court decision would set a legal precedent for the next family that fell victim to a similar crime.
"If this decision had been made the first time, the pain we have gone through this past year wouldn't have lasted," he said.
"We've been through all the emotions of going to court, listening to the defence and fighting to make ourselves heard.
"As minute as it is, at least other people who become victims might get some sort of closure out of it.
"It will happen again to someone, somewhere down the track.
"We have to get the message across to people who jump in cars while under the influence, thinking they can go down back roads to avoid the police.
"We live with that decision every single day."
- APN NEWSDESK