Greater Manchester Police are now wanting to speak to tourists who were in Benidorm at the time a man was assaulted and later died.
Mike Rydings was on holiday in Benidorm to watch the 2018 World Cup and celebrate a birthday with friends when he was fatally injured outside a nightclub in June 2018.
The Wythenshawe man was involved in an altercation in the early hours of June 23, 2018, on Benidorm Square with a man who was part of a five or six-man group. During the incident, Mike was assaulted and hit the ground causing critical injuries.
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The 47-year-old spent a month unconscious in a local hospital before being repatriated to Salford Royal Hospital. He then died in August 2019.
Inquiries were conducted by Spanish authorities but Mike’s killer was never brought to justice.
GMP has questioned more than 15 holidaymakers who were there on the night in preparation for Mike’s inquest set to be held in April this year.
A photograph has now been released as well with Mike wearing a red t-shirt believed to be the one he was wearing at the time of the assault.
The man suspected of assaulting Mike is described as a white man in his 20s or 30s, with a larger than average build, 5ft 7ins to 6ft tall and was possibly wearing camouflage clothing at the time.
In a joint statement Mike’s daughter, Hayley Barker, and sister, Nikki Howard, said: “Mike spent 13 months in Salford Royal Hospital on the Critical Care Unit where he was unable to speak or move. Only his eyes were his very limited communication via blinking although most of the time his injury was so extreme that very often Mike was completely unaware of where he was, who his family were and more importantly, who he was.
“At the age of 47-years-old, a father and a grandfather, his life had changed forever relying on every single medical resource available in order for him to survive, unable to breathe unaided, unable to tell you how he was feeling, unable to even hold your hand! And it happened due to one vicious incident, in an instant but this nightmare did not end there.
“After extensive medical intervention, family daily visits and praying that Mike would recover and be able to live the rest of his life, it was cut short. His condition was never going to improve; his quality of life was so limited that the kindest but incredibly heart-breaking decision was to let him go.
“On Sunday 11 August 2019 Mike took his last breath and passed away at the age of 48-years-old – leaving his family totally devastated and his friends in despair. How could a 50th celebration end in such a tragic way?
“Mike was a father, grandfather, son, brother, nephew, cousin and friend to many. Mike was full of energy, the life and soul of the party; a practical joker, generous to a fault, enjoying all aspects of life and his beloved Manchester United.
“Someone somewhere knows who this person is.
“Were you with him? Is he your friend or partner? All Mike’s family and friends want is some justice for him. The person who did this is continuing to live a full life, but he could repeat this attack on a member of your family and change your life forever!
“We as a family have a huge hole in it which can and will never be filled. Mike has missed out on so much already and will continue to do so which we can not change. But we can change the fact that he died without justice. Please, please let the police know if you have any information at all, no matter how small you think it may be, it takes more than one piece to complete a jigsaw. “
Detective Inspector Nicola McCulloch, of our Major Incident Team, said: “Sadly, no one has been brought to justice for Mike’s death ever since he was seriously – and ultimately fatally – assaulted outside a bar in Benidorm in June 2018.
“When we were notified of this incident and Mike’s tragic passing, we committed ourselves to doing everything we can to support the Spanish authorities in piecing together all the circumstances leading to his death and, importantly, to identify his killer.
“While the murder investigation in Spain has not been successful, we continue to be determined to do whatever possible to get the answers Mike’s loved ones crave for his upcoming inquest.
“This has seen us speak to over a dozen men and women who were in Benidorm at the time, many of whom recall a great deal of what occurred on the night despite the passage of time and this encourages us that someone out there knows who did this to Mike and is able to tell us.
“There is a suggestion that the group involved in the altercation were from the UK, but this is not certain and it is therefore vital that anyone who may recall any information as to who may have been involved gets in touch with us knowing it could prove to be highly significant. “
Anyone with information should contact GMP’s Major Incident Team on 0161 856 6777 quoting Operation Thurston.
Details can be passed anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111
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