Statement from Jo’s Brother Chris
Chris Yeates and his partner Alla Ritch have released the below statement
“From December 19th onwards I entered into a surreal hole of despair. Jo was my sister and I shared the fear that my parents had that something bad had happened to her. My partner and I have been supporting each other and through the time when Jo was missing contacted many helpful businesses to put up posters and also put up many ourselves to ensure Jo’s face was known to as many people as possible. The whole week seemed very unreal up to the time when Jo was found which to me did not bring closure but an acceptance of the situation.
I got to say a final emotional goodbye to Jo and the despair I had was replaced with a wave of deep sadness. The last couple of weeks I have been spending time with my partner and her son comforting each other and trying to get our heads around what has happened whilst supporting my parents as much as possible.
The tremendous amount of support we have had from family, friends and the general public has been truly overwhelming and brings a sense of slight elation at an otherwise tragic time.
All my memories of Jo are positive and I’ve etched these into my mind. We never had sibling rivalry or negative feelings towards each other. She lived her life to the full and for me is a personal inspiration to follow ones passion and push oneself.
My hope is that whoever did this is bought to justice and I have confidence that the police will track down the person or persons responsible.
My partner Alla had a few words she also wanted to say :
In the past few weeks my family underwent a whirlwind of emotional stress and test of relationships. Jo would be very proud to see how all family members pulled together to provide each other with comfort and support as well as to spread the word via numerous channels.
Thank you all for your heartfelt messages of love and support, it made my family and I feel blessed in these difficult times.
Jo’s body looked very peaceful as if she was just sleeping and was about to open her eyes but breath was no longer there. Chris and Jo have similar features and at that point it seemed as if I was standing between representations of both life and death.
Joanna Yeates was and remains a perfect beacon of light and a great example to us all to live everyday to our fullest potential. We could all follow in her example. I am confident that many good things will emerge in her name as a result of this ordeal. She was an architect, a creator of better living space for humanity.
It seems that only the darkest of all souls could literally put her bright light out like this.
Nothing in the world is going to change what happened to Jo, but I hope that whoever is responsible will be stopped from doing any more harm to innocent people. “