Daniel Morcombe.
Daniel Morcombe.

Daniel's public farewell

A PUBLIC funeral is likely to be held for Daniel Morcombe to give thousands of Sunshine Coast people touched by Daniel's story a chance to say goodbye.

While Denise Morcombe would prefer a private goodbye, she told the Daily she understood that those who have followed the search for Daniel over the past eight years would want to attend.

"I think it will have to be a public funeral," Mrs Morcombe said.

"We don't want one and then have to have another one for everyone else, I could not bear it."

Mrs Morcombe said Siena College at Sippy Downs, where Daniel went to school with his twin Brad, had already offered to host a service. It has an outdoor area large enough to cater for the public.

In the weeks since news of an arrest in the Daniel case, hundreds of flowers and cards have been left at the roadside memorial under the Kiel Mountain bridge at Woombye, where Daniel was last seen on December 7, 2003.

Bruce Morcombe has previously said he hoped a funeral service could be held on December 7, the eighth anniversary of Daniel's disappearance.

Mrs Morcombe said she was not fixed on a date but wanted the service sooner rather than later.

"When someone dies, you normally have a funeral within a week," she said. "We just want to put the poor boy to rest."

Mrs Morcombe confirmed that the family would seek a meeting with the Director of Public Prosecutions to plead for the release of Daniel's remains. Daniel's remains are considered part of the official evidence against Perth man Brett Peter Cowan, 42, who has been charged with Daniel's abduction and murder.

The Morcombes are hoping that if defence lawyers need to verify the DNA testing confirming the remains as Daniel's, that they do it before the case is under way.

"Hopefully, the testing they have already done will be sufficient," Mrs Morcombe said.

Mr Cowan's lawyer Tim Meehan could not be reached for comment.

Morcombe family lawyer Peter Boyce said Daniel's remains could be released if all the testing needed for the legal process had been completed.

"I would have thought it was possible. It depends on where the forensic examination is at," Mr Boyce said.

Police on Friday announced they planned to call off the search for remains this week, two months after beginning an exhaustive search of swampy bushland at Glasshouse Mountains.

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