Zoe Bennett’s homecoming proved an emotional moment - for everyone apart from her.
The daughter of murdered Preston businessman Errol Bennett returned to the city to give a keynote speech about her life at a business networking event. And there was hardly a dry eye in the place.
But the award-winning motivational speaker confessed: “It wasn’t really emotional for me. I suppose I’m hardened to it all after so long.”
Zoe’s life was turned upside down when her dad was brutally killed at his holiday villa in Jamaica in December 2011.
His nephew, Zoe’s cousin Josephas Clifton Bennett, was jailed for 40 years for the machete murder when he was eventually brought to court after a three-and-a-half year fight for justice by Zoe and her family in Britain.
Now she uses her harrowing experiences - she had to identify her dad’s mutilated body and then suffered death threats - to coach people how to fight back from adversity.
Mum Lynette and brother Errol Jnr were in the audience at Preston’s Gujarat Enterprise Centre in South Meadow Lane. “It brought out a lot of emotion,” said Zoe who now lives in the West Midlands. “People were crying, people were hugging me and some said afterwards how inspiring they had found it.
“It was about never giving up in adversity - giving people techniques and showing them how they can go forward and change their mindset.
“My brother said it brought back the realisation of what happened. But he supports me 100 per cent to get the message across never to give up.”