Australian diplomat visits Duncan to address ‘thrill killing’
DUNCAN, Okla – An Australian diplomat visited the city Duncan to speak to residents about the murder of Chris Lane.
The 22-year-old Australian baseball player was visiting his girlfriend when he was gunned down while jogging August 16. One of the three teens charged in the shooting allegedly told police they killed him because they were bored.
Wednesday, Australian Consul Mauro Kolobaric came to the small town to learn more about Oklahoma and assure everyone that relations between the U.S. and Australia are stronger than ever.
He was greeted by the Duncan Rotary Club singing the Chorus from “Oklahoma” and then with the American and Australian national anthems.
The visit turned emotional when he met Sarah Harper, the girlfriend of Chris Lane. The Harpers gave him a cap and jersey from the baseball club Chris grew up playing for in Australia.
Despite other Australian politicians urging a boycott of the United States, Kolobaric views the attack as a random act of violence.
“It’s tragic that it involved any young person.” He said. “The fact that he was Australian was random. He wasn’t targeted because he was Australian.”
Kolobaric says Chris’ death is not about one country forgiving another, but about both healing together.
“I don’t think it’s about forgiveness. It’s just about us working together as communities.” He said. “As I’ve said before, It’s a terrible loss for Australia, It’s a terrible loss for the Lane family, I think it’s a terrible loss for Duncan and Oklahoma as well. He was well loved.”
The Duncan Rotary Club gave the Consul General an ink pen, a Duncan Rotary Club banner, and a painting to take back to the Australian embassy in Washington, D.C.
Meanwhile, police have still not found the gun used in the shooting.
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