Friend of Cameron Blair pays tribute to murdered student to raise awareness of impact of knife crime

Friend of Cameron Blair pays tribute to murdered student to raise awareness of impact of knife crime
Cameron Blair

A FRIEND of murdered Cork student Cameron Blair has described him as a "diamond in the rough" and "a shooting star".

Bandon native James McCarthy wrote a blog post in memory of his friend on his 21st birthday, which should have been last Thursday.

He wants to raise awareness of the effects of knife crime, following the murder of Cameron on Bandon Road on January 16.

A teenager who pleaded guilty to the murder was sentenced to life in prison on April 20. 

Two days later, he lodged an application with the Courts Service for leave to appeal the severity of the sentence.

Mr Justice Paul McDermott passed down a life sentence on the teenager, with a review scheduled for November 2032. 

Pictured at Bandon Rubgy club where a guard of honor was held by hundreds of members for Cameron Blair's funeral. Picture Denis Boyle
Pictured at Bandon Rubgy club where a guard of honor was held by hundreds of members for Cameron Blair's funeral. Picture Denis Boyle

No date has been set for hearing the appeal application.

James McCarthy, who became friends with Cameron in Cork Institute of Technology, said: "He was the kind of friend who noticed if you were down and would discretely build your mood without drawing attention to you. 

"I genuinely believe that Cameron spent his life bringing joy to others.

"I have hundreds of memories with Cameron. Each one brings a smile to my face. That was the kind of person Cam was. 

"He brought fun, joy and excitement everywhere he went, a characteristic that made him so popular and in-demand to be around.

"He truly was a diamond in the rough; a loyal friend, a brother, a leader, a protector, and a shooting star.

"Cameron entering a room was like throwing fuel to a fire.

"He created an all-consuming and overwhelming feeling of euphoria, every time."

James said he has written the blog to give people an idea of who Cameron Blair was.

"As knife crime has begun to increase across Cork, I have created this blog in the hope of spreading awareness of the impact that losing somebody so young to such crimes has on not only their family but their community."

The Central Criminal Court had heard that just moments after being stabbed outside a house party on Bandon Road, 20-year-old Cameron said: "Don't worry lads, I don't want to be fighting". 

He had acted as a peacemaker, the court was told.

His murderer wrote a letter of apology to the Blair family, saying: "Cameron was nothing but nice to me on the night and did nothing wrong to me. It was never ever my intention for any of this to happen."

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