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Mother of 11-year-old autistic boy hit by train long feared his death

Alex Raichman, pictured, was found dead on Sunday night

The mother of a severely autistic boy who was killed by a train after running away from his care centre has said she has been ‘terrified of this day for the last few years.’  

Alex Raichman, who couldn’t talk but ‘loved running free,’ was found dead at Oatley train station on Sunday night after a two-hour police search.

Today, his heartbroken mother Sharon Braverman paid tribute to the eleven-year-old in an emotionally charged funeral at Chevra Kadisha Memorial Hall in east Sydney.

She said she has long struggled to keep her ‘sweet little Alexie’ safe from harm. 

‘Looking back, I now realise a lot of what I did was trying to prevent this day from happening,’ she said.

‘I have been terrified of this day for the last few years.’

Directly addressing her late son, she added: ‘I couldn’t keep you completely safe and completely happy at the same time. All the biting, pushing, kicking and watching guard so you didn’t run off.’  

Ms Braverman said it was the greatest honour and privilege of her life to be Alex’s mother, news.com reported.

She said she could always understand him by looking into his eyes.

 The 11-year-old loved cuddles and birds, according to his distraught aunt

 The 11-year-old loved cuddles and birds, according to his distraught aunt

It comes after Alex’s aunt Shellie Braverman told Daily Mail Australia his twin brother, mother and father are ‘taking comfort in each other’s love’.

‘The kindness of the community in every form has been really profound,’ Ms Braverman said. 

‘We want to thank the hundreds of people who went out to look for Alex when he went missing,’ she said. 

Alex (right), 11, had been left in care by his parents while they went away on holiday. His body was found two hours after he went missing

Alex (right), 11, had been left in care by his parents while they went away on holiday. His body was found two hours after he went missing

Floral tributes have been left on the train platform while family, friends and disability group Sydney Friendship Circle

Floral tributes have been left on the train platform while family, friends and disability group Sydney Friendship Circle

‘He had a history of absconding and an investigation will uncover how the system will better look after these kids,’ Ms Braverman said.

‘I have read the questions about safety at the houses including the fencing.

‘There needs to be an investigation into the safety and fences is the tip of the iceberg.’

Ms Braverman was close with her nephew and said he ‘loved giving cuddles and was the best high-fiver in the universe’.  

‘These kids are the pillar of the community because they remind us what love is,’ she said.

‘When you see parents doing it tough just smile at them and give kindness.’ 

The aunt ‘found enough strength’ to go to the train station on Tuesday to leave a tribute to Alex.

Floral tributes have been left on the train platform while family, friends and disability group Sydney Friendship Circle – who shared several social media posts during the search for the boy – took to Facebook to remember his ‘mischievous smile’.

disability group Sydney Friendship Circle took to Facebook to remember the young boy's 'mischievous smile'

Disability group Sydney Friendship Circle took to Facebook (pictured) to remember the young boy’s ‘mischievous smile’

Family and friends also shared tributes to the young boy

Family and friends also shared tributes to the young boy

The severely autistic boy was found dead at Oatley train station (pictured) after running away from his carer on Sunday night

The severely autistic boy was found dead at Oatley train station (pictured) after running away from his carer on Sunday night

‘Alex Raichman was a treasured son, grandson, brother and friend. Today the world lost a beautiful angel,’ their Facebook post read. 

‘As we try to process this tremendous loss, your beautiful life flashes in front of us. 

‘Alex we are going to miss your mischievous smile, the joy in your eyes, your curiosity about the smallest creation and your zest for life. We will miss you so much.’

Alex, who was non-verbal, is believed to have run onto train lines about 9.30pm. 

A report will be prepared for the Coroner.

NSW state MP for Oatley Mark Coure said: ‘My heart goes out to the family, friends and carer.

A full scale police search, including helicopters, was launched in a bid to find Alex. Pictured: Oatley station where the boy was found

A full scale police search, including helicopters, was launched in a bid to find Alex. Pictured: Oatley station where the boy was found

Police (pictured at the scene) searching with dog units found his body at 9.30pm. It is believed he was hit by a train

Police (pictured at the scene) searching with dog units found his body at 9.30pm. It is believed he was hit by a train

‘I want to thank the emergency services, and all the locals who last night helped to search for this little boy.

‘As a father, I can only imagine the grief of the family and extend my deepest sympathies for their unimaginable loss.

‘I would encourage anyone with any information regarding this ongoing investigation, to please contact the police.’

More than $47,000 has been raised for the family since Alex’s death.   

An investigation is underway into the circumstances surrounding the child's death. Pictured: Police at the scene

An investigation is underway into the circumstances surrounding the child’s death. Pictured: Police at the scene



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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