Donations soar for family of two-year-old Rowan, alleged East Lismore murder-suicide victim

Support is growing for the grieving mother of a “beautiful, joyful and adored” boy killed in a “cowardly act of violence” by his father in a suspected murder-suicide.

Rowan, two, and his father James Harrison, 38, were found dead inside a unit in East Lismore, New South Wales, when police were alerted when the boy did not return home after a planned custody visit. Sunday afternoon.

The boy’s mother, Dr Sophie Roome, revealed her family was facing “incomprehensible pain” and said there are “no excuses possible for this pain”.

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Family friend Belinda Olding launched a fundraiser in Rowan’s honor and said the money could be used in a number of ways to support her mother.

“Rowan’s family is devastated. No child should be murdered by those who are meant to love and protect them,” Olding said.

“This is a fund created for Sophie to use as she sees fit. It can be for a memorial, a donation to a charity, for personal use or to help try to change the horror that is domestic violence.”

Olding’s goal of $5,000 for the “memorial fund” has been surpassed by a wave of donations, and the total raised has soared to about $76,000 as of Friday.

More than 800 individual donors have contributed.

Dr Sophie Roome has received an outpouring of support following the death of her young son Rowan.Dr Sophie Roome has received an outpouring of support following the death of her young son Rowan.
Dr Sophie Roome has received an outpouring of support following the death of her young son Rowan. Credit: GoFundMe

The nature of Rowan’s death shocked the community and authorities, who are treating it as a murder-suicide.

“A more tragic event could not have been found… it’s very sad and that is a matter that is now being investigated and a report will be prepared for the coroner,” NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Peter Thurtell said. .

Harrison was the subject of a domestic violence arrest warrant issued by Roome. The father was still allowed visitors to see his son.

Roome said her little boy, who enjoyed music, swimming, the beach and spending time with his friends and family, was “taken from us in the most unfathomable way.”

Dr. Sophie Roome has shared her Dr. Sophie Roome has shared her
Dr Sophie Roome has shared her “incomprehensible pain”. Credit: roome family

“He touched the hearts of everyone who was lucky enough to be in his world,” he said in a joint statement with his family on Wednesday.

“Rowan’s life was ended by an evil and cowardly act of violence, perpetrated by a person he should have been able to trust more.

“There are no possible excuses for this pain and the pain it has caused has no end. We are devastated. “We will love and miss Rowan forever.”

If you or someone you know is affected by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit

In case of emergency, call 000.

If you need help in a crisis, call Life line on 13 11 14. For more information about depression, contact beyondblue on 1300224636 or speak to your GP, a local health professional or someone you trust.

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