Daniel Morcombe’s parents Denise and Bruce called into Shalom College yesterday as part of their roadtrip to promote child safety during Child Protection Week.
Daniel Morcombe’s parents Denise and Bruce called into Shalom College yesterday as part of their roadtrip to promote child safety during Child Protection Week. Scottie Simmonds

Daniel's memory to always live on

RUN when you do not feel safe.

The small and simple tip was just a part of the message the parents of murdered teenager Daniel Morcombe were trying to get across when they spoke to students at Shalom College yesterday.

Bruce Morcombe said running was one of the things Daniel did not do when he was taken while waiting for a bus on a showery day almost eight years ago.

Mr Morcombe and his wife Denise stopped off at the school to speak to Year 8 students as part of a statewide tour during Child Protection Week.

About 100 more members of the public joined the more than 260 students to listen to the speech, including a handful of students from some of Bundaberg's Catholic primary schools.

During the speech, Mr Morcombe spoke about how important it was for children to listen to their instincts and get away from a situation when they felt uncomfortable.

"When you get to that safe place, you must tell someone," he urged.

The pair also urged parents to take part in keeping their child safe.

"The key is a commitment to having a loving and caring relationship with the kids, but at the same time be aware of what they are up to without being a sticky beak," he said.

But he warned it was also a two-way street.

"When your parents want to know where you are going, they are not nagging - they want you to be safe," he said.

Mr Morcombe urged the students to "be aware of abduction but not alarmed" and gave them tips to help ensure they remained safe.

He said he thought students responded better to the safety message because of the Morcombes' family tragedy.

"We can't change the past, but we can perhaps influence the future," he said.

The father-of-three said the recent developments in the case had been hard on the family.

In the past month Brett Peter Cowan, 41, has been charged with Daniel's murder and abduction and a number of Daniel's bones found.

At the end of the presentation, the Morcombes were presented with $1500 for the Morcombe Foundation which had been raised by the school by selling red ribbons.

Shalom College principal Dan McMahon said every student had bought a ribbon to support the cause.

"The ribbons are all over the school at the moment," he said.

The Morcombes will visit about 20 schools across the state during the week.



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