While we await the trial……………………Some heart warming photos of the family back home in the article below.
Girl kidnapped for two years meets baby twin brothers for the first time back home in Dublin
May 8, 2014
Candice Gannon (29) and her daughter, Ellie Gannon (9), hold twins, Charles and Henry (2 months old) at home in Killiney
Yesterday, Ellie spent her first morning at home in almost two years since she was abducted by her Portuguese father – and her first thought was to help her mother Candice Gannon cook breakfast.
The caring sister awoke in her Ballsbridge home with the promise of a day out at a local park to feed the ducks to look forward to.
Ellie, who had been living with her father, Filipe Silva, 35, and her Portuguese grandmother in a two-star hotel room since October, had only seen her mother four times during Skype chats permitted by her father.
And she had never met her two new two-month-old baby brothers, Charles and Henry, until she arrived into Dublin on Monday night.
Ellie Gannon (9) with her sister Olivia (6) at home in Killiney,
The moment she touched down on Irish soil – after the family secured her custody in a legal battle that has run for six years – was captured in yesterday’s Irish Daily Mail.
‘She woke up and helped me with breakfast,’ Ellie’s mother, Candice, 29, said. ‘She made beans and eggs with me and then we realised in the chaos, we had forgotten the bread,’ Ms Gannon laughed. ‘It was like waking up to all our Christmases at once to have Ellie home with us finally.’
And Ms Gannon said of her family’s joy over the last couple of days, ‘We have walked out of the darkness.’
Running around the house and playing with little sister Olivia, who is three, it was hard to believe that Ellie had been away from the warmth of her family for two years.
Ellie Silva and Philip Gannon at T2 in Dublin Airport
‘It’s a wonderful feeling to have Ellie home. I feel really happy,’ Ms Gannon said. ‘It is like Ellie was never away. She is so happy to be home with us. Ellie is smiling and laughing because she is now part of a normal family unit with stability. That is what every child needs. Ellie needed her mother, as I needed her.’
With her own bedroom and the adoration of her siblings – in particular, little Olivia – Ellie has already stepped into the familiar shoes of big sister. She confidently cradled her twin brothers and guided her little sister in games yesterday.
But despite the family living in a suddenly idyllic situation, the past is never far away. Olivia gets upset when she cannot find her sister even if Ellie steps out of the room for a matter of minutes.
Ms Gannon explained: ‘Olivia missed Ellie so much and she is scared she is going to go missing again, but we just have to let everything settle back so she knows her sister is staying here with us.’ But still, the family feel there is a threat of Ellie being taken again.
The Portuguese authorities have given custody to Ms Gannon but Mr Silva has been given part access, meaning he has been allowed permission to take Ellie during certain holidays throughout the year.
The first of these arrangements is due to take place in just eight weeks and this is not something the family want to think too much about as they revel in having their daughter home with them.
Ellie vanished during a holiday with her father on the Algarve in July 2012.
In February 2013, Portuguese police found the child in a Porto apartment. She had been told to wear a disguise and call herself Pipinha.
Looking towards her husband, Dublin businessman Philip Gannon, 47, Ms Gannon smiles, saying: ‘He has been my rock. Philip has been my hero in all this – he stood by me and never once gave up on Ellie.’
As she adjusted to being Ellie’s ever-attentive mother again yesterday, a cautious Ms Gannon said: ‘If I behave differently she will know there is something wrong. I will be saying, “clean your room, Ellie”. There is no point in being different. We are a normal family. I want to keep it as normal as possible.’
Next up for the Gannons is helping Ellie settle back into life in Ireland. ‘We are looking at very good schools in Dublin,’ Ms Gannon said. ‘We are lucky enough to be able to afford it. We want the best for Ellie.’