A mother has recalled the moment she came across her gravely injured son stabbed in a dairy robbery – before she too was stabbed and suffered a head and shoulder injury in an incident that shocked the country.
In her first interview since the June 19 robbery at the Grey Lynn dairy which her family owns, Gita Patel said seeing her son, Siddharth, with stab injuries "was like a horror movie".
"I was scared for my life," the 62-year-old said.
"After I was stabbed I got up and saw my son take off his clothes. There was blood pouring out everywhere - it was like a horror movie. Blood was coming out from his back and chest.
"Then I looked down and saw blood coming out of my stomach and [from my] head."
Siddharth Patel, 36, suffered severe injuries in the incident after being stabbed in the chest and stomach area.
His mother was stabbed in the stomach, and suffered a head wound and dislocated a shoulder when she fell over.
A month on, Siddharth remains in hospital, with Gita saying he "will never be the same again".
"My son is very skinny, he is struggling to get better and now his stitches have become infected," Gita said.
"He is not very well and has a lot of internal injuries. His lungs and intestines are damaged. He will be in hospital for a long time."
Gita was cooking dinner in the kitchen behind the shop when she heard shouting and what sounded like chairs being thrown around from the store.
Talking to the Herald on Sunday yesterday, she said she rushed to the shop and panicked when she saw her son being stabbed.
She was stunned by the random attack and is struggling to understand why they were targeted.
"We've been here for 15 years and nothing like this has happened before," she said. "This is a very safe area, we have really nice customers."
The Patels were meticulous with their security.
Navin Patel, Gita's husband usually sits in the shop entrance monitoring customers- and there are four security cameras installed.
But on the night of the attack Navin was overseas visiting family in Canada.
"We have never had a holiday in 15 years," Gita said.
"We went to India for my son's wedding on April 5. It was a very small ceremony and after six days Siddharth and I came back here. But my husband went to Canada to see his sister. He was only there for a week before this happened."
Gita said she was now scared working in the shop but said they couldn't afford to sell their family home and business.
Originally from Fiji, the Patel family immigrated to New Zealand in 2003.
"We brought all our money from Fiji to buy this business – it's our bread and butter," she said.
She said she was angry and added that whatever punishment was handed out to those responsible, "it will not bring my son's life back to what it was".
It's going to be a slow recovery for Siddharth. And while he waits for his new bride to get a visitor's visa to New Zealand, his mother is constantly by his side.
The Patel family wants to thank the Grey Lynn community for their overwhelming love and support.
"We can't thank them enough for all their good wishes - they have been so kind to us. My shop and rooms are full of flowers."
A 27-year-old man, from Otahuhu, and a 16-year-old boy have been charged with assault with intent to rob and aggravated wounding.