TODAY MARKS TWO YEARS SINCE THE HORRIFIC ISLAMIC TERRORIST ATTACK IN MANCHESTER. POLITICALITE PAYS TRIBUTE TO SOME OF THE VICTIMS WHO TRAGICALLY LOST THEIR LIVES IN ONE OF THE MOST DISTURBING SUICIDE BOMBINGS TO HAVE TAKEN PLACE ON BRITISH SOIL.
We encourage you to read each description in silence, to pay respect to the many victims, to the grieving families left behind, and to reflect upon the urgency to open honest debate about radical Islam and the causes of terrorism with the aim to one day put an end to the suffering of innocent people.
Fifteen-year-old Megan Hurley was at the concert with her brother Bradley, who was “seriously hurt” in the explosion.
The siblings’ parents, who kept vigil at Bradley’s bedside, were “destroyed beyond words”, a relative said.
Writing on Facebook, the relative added: “It doesn’t seem fair for two kids to go to a concert and only one returns how in God’s name could this happen to such a lovely family…heartbroken.”
Megan’s death was confirmed online by her aunt Maxine Benson, who wrote: “My poor sister and Mike are destroyed beyond words… it doesn’t seem fair for two kids to go to a concert and only one returns how in God’s name could this happen to such a lovely family… heartbroken xx.”
COURTNEY BOYLE AND PHILIP TRON
Courtney, 19, was at the Ariana Grande concert with her mum’s partner Philip, who was 32. Both were from Gateshead.
In a statement released from Great Manchester Police, both families paid tribute to them.
Courtney’s mum, Deborah Hutchinson, said: “My stunning amazing beautiful daughter. You were my rock, you made me so proud with all you had achieved and my gorgeous crazy Philip, you made my world a happy place and now you are both my angels flying high in the sky.”
Courtney’s dad added: “I am going to miss my baby girl Courtney Boyle for the rest of my life.
“I will never forget you and I will love you forever. Grandad Bob misses you loads also.”
A statement from Philip’s mum read: “Firstly, we would like to thank the emergency services, police, nurses, support staff, family and friends and the people of Manchester for their continued help and support which they have given us throughout this harrowing time.
“Our most amazing son, partner, brother, father, uncle, nephew and cousin, Philip Tron, sadly passed away on the 22nd May 2017. Philip was such a fun loving, energetic soul, he would light up the darkest room and lift your spirits with his infectious laugh, witty sense of humour and his beautiful smile. Words cannot express the huge void his passing has left in all our lives.”
More than 100 people held a candlelit vigil for mum Wendy Fawell, praying for her safe return.
But Ms Fawell, from Otley in West Yorkshire, was confirmed to have died in the explosion by family a couple of days after the attack.
Her son, Adam Fawell, wrote on Facebook: “I am really sad to say that my mum Wendy Fawell unfortunately has passed away as a result of the terror attack in Manchester on Monday evening. I want to say a massive thank you to all friends and family who has shared posts to try find her and all the messages that have been sent.”
The message added: “RIP Mum you will be sadly missed xxxxxxxxx.”
Elaine McIver was an officer with Cheshire Police. She was off-duty when she was killed in the blast. Her family paid tribute to her:
“Elaine was a much loved daughter, sister, Auntie, friend and colleague, the best we could ever have wished for.”She was everyone’s friend, thoughtful beyond belief with an effervescent and outgoing personality. She would have been devastated by the injuries sustained by her partner Paul, and we all wish him a speedy recovery.
Elaine just loved life, and had a major love of music. Despite what has happened to her, she would want us all to carry on regardless and not be frightened by fear tactics, instead she regularly urged us all to rise up against it. Although we will all miss her beyond belief, we absolutely know she will live in our hearts forever.”
The 14-year-old from from the Isle of Barra in Scotland was at the Ariana Grande when the suicide bomb was detonated.
“Our family is devastated and words cannot express how we feel at losing our darling Eilidh” family statement said. “Eilidh was vivacious and full of fun. She loved all music whether it was listening to Ariana or playing the bagpipes with her pipe band.
“As a family we would like to express our thanks and gratitude for the support and kind messages we have received at this difficult time.”
Chloe Rutherford, 17, and her 19-year-old boyfriend Liam Curry
The couple from South Shields were described as “inseparable” and “beautiful inside and out”, their grieving relatives said in a statement issued through police.
“On the night our daughter Chloe died and our son Liam died, their wings were ready but our hearts were not. They were perfect in every way for each other and were meant to be.
They were beautiful inside and out to ourselves and our families, and they were inseparable.
Chloe always described herself as ditzy who Liam adored and would do anything for, including dealing with Chloe’s demands for chocolate.
They lived to go to new places together and explore different cities. They wanted to be together forever and now they are.”
Lisa Lees and Alison Howe
Two mums, Alison Howe and Lisa Lees, had gone to Manchester Arena together to pick up their children when the bomb went off as they stood waiting in the venue’s foyer.
Touching tributes were left for the mum’s, both from Royton, Manchester on Facebook following the confirmation of their deaths.
Leeds schoolgirl Sorrell Leczkowski was named by her family as one of the victims of the attack. Her grandfather, Michael Healey, said: “I am absolutely heartbroken to confirm that my granddaughter was killed in the terror attack that claimed so many innocent lives.
“Sorrell was only 14, but she was our rock, she kept us all grounded. She was such a clever, talented, creative girl, there was nothing she couldn’t do.”
The family of married mother-of-three Michelle Kiss have said they are “devastated by her loss” and hope to draw on the “courage and strength she showed in her life” as they come to terms with her death.
“Michelle Kiss was a loving wife to Tony, mother to Dylan, Elliot and Millie, as well as daughter to Mick and Christine and sister to Nichola,” the family said in a statement.
“Family was her life and we are all obviously devastated by her loss. She has been taken away from us, and all that love her, in the most traumatic way imaginable.
“We hope to draw from the courage and strength she showed in her life to get through this extremely difficult time.”
The heartbroken “soulmate” of concert goer Martyn Hett – who has been missing since the night of the Manchester Attack – has confirmed that he has died.
Russell Hayward, Martyn’s brother Dan, and scores of friends had been appealing on social media for any news of the former Come Dine With Me contestant after they were unable to contact him after the blast.
Russell posted a message paying tribute to the “iconic and beautiful” Martyn last night after finding out that he had not survived.
He wrote: “I love you Martyn. I always will.”
A desperate mother who spoke of her frantic efforts to find her teenage daughter after the Manchester Arena attack has confirmed she has died.
Charlotte Campbell last heard from 15-year-old Olivia shortly before Ariana Grande came on stage on Monday evening.
Her family had spent Tuesday searching for her, hoping she was one of the dozens of injured people receiving treatment in hospital.
But in a heartbreaking message posted on her Facebook page in the early hours of Wednesday morning, Charlotte revealed she had died in the blast.
She wrote: “RIP my darling precious gorgeous girl Olivia Campbell taken far far to soon go sing with the angels and keep smiling mummy loves you so much.”
Saffie Rose Roussos
Saffie Rose Roussos, described as a “beautiful little girl”, was named by her school as a victim of the Manchester concert attack.
She was eight years old.
Chris Upton, headteacher Tarleton Community Primary School in Preston, said: “News of Saffie’s death in this appalling attack has come as a tremendous shock to all of us and I would like to send our deepest condolences to all of her family and friends.
“The thought that anyone could go out to a concert and not come home is heartbreaking.
“Saffie was simply a beautiful little girl in every aspect of the word. She was loved by everyone and her warmth and kindness will be remembered fondly. Saffie was quiet and unassuming with a creative flair.”
Mr Upton said their focus was on helping pupils and staff cope with the news and that specialist support from Lancashire County Council had been called in to help.
Twenty-six year-old John Atkinson from Radcliffe, Bury has been named as a victim of the Manchester concert blast.
He was described in tributes as an “amazing young man”, and a fund for his family, set up by friends, had received more than £1,000 less than an hour after it was established.
“John was one in a million and loved by so many,” wrote Hayley Turk, who organised the fund through website GoFundMe, adding: “A true gentleman.”
“Absolutely heart-broken,” wrote one contributor, who gave her name as Kimberley Bowker.
A private civic memorial service is being held at St Ann’s Church, Manchester, at 2pm today. The families of those killed, people who were injured, and representatives from first responders are invited to attend. As with last year, bells will ring out from buildings across the city centre including Manchester Town Hall, Manchester Cathedral, and St Ann’s Church at 10.31pm – the exact anniversary of the attack.