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Dad of killed Nottingham student Grace O’Malley-Kumar says 'look after your friends' in emotional vigil speech

Dad of killed Nottingham student Grace O’Malley-Kumar says 'look after your friends' in emotional vigil speech

The father of Grace O'Malley-Kumar has addressed a crowd of people at a vigil for his daughter and fellow student Barnaby Webber

The dad of a student killed in the recent attack in Nottingham spoke emotionally at a vigil that was held today (14 June) to pay tribute to the memories of the three victims.

Three people were killed yesterday in Nottingham city centre in the early hours of the morning, with University of Nottingham students Barnaby Webber and Grace O'Malley-Kumar, both 19, stabbed to death at around 4am.

School caretaker Ian Coates was then found dead from knife injuries in Magdala Road and had his van stolen, which was then used in an attempt to run over three people in Milton Street.

A 31-year-old suspect was tasered by police and arrested on suspicion of murder, they remain in police custody.

The families of Barnaby and Grace attended today's vigil along with thousands of people who turned out to pay tribute to the victims.

Cricketer Barnaby Webber was one of those killed.

At the vigil, Barnaby's father David said he 'cannot comprehend how I am going to deal with it' but said his son would have been 'super-touched by everyone that’s here'.

Grace's father, Dr Sanjoy Kumar, also thanked everyone for attending the vigil and urged the crowd to 'look after each other' and to 'look after your friends'.

He said: "Everyone here I really, really want to thank you for your support, for taking the time to be here.

"All of you guys, everywhere that I see, a sea of people, such a lovely sign of the university and the bond you have."

"Grace was also like Barney, she loved coming up to Nottingham. In fact, we couldn’t get her down."

Dr Sanjoy Kumar and David Webber, the fathers of the victims, spoke to the crowds gathered at the vigil.
Jacob King/PA Wire

“I said to her last week, ‘come down’, she said 'well, after she’s had a few more sessions'. I used to call them her crisis meetings."

"The love that we have out here, I just wish we had it everywhere. So, look after each other is the big thing. Look after your friends and look after people around you. It is so important."

Grace had been studying to become a doctor as she wanted to be like her father, who had been awarded an MBE after saving the lives of three teenagers in 2009 when they were stabbed near his GP surgery in Chingford, East London.

Dr Kumar continued: "Grace and her friend they fell together and you just need to be friends with everyone. You need to love everyone and I wish we had more of it.

Grace O'Malley-Kumar was stabbed to death aged 19 in Nottingham, the other victims were Barnaby Webber and Ian Coates.

"But most of all, all of you guys, everyone who’s here who Grace may not have even touched, I really thank you for being here and taking the time."

"I really do. It means so much to Sinead, my wife, and me. She loved being here and she loved all of you. She really did and you should all feel very blessed."

"She was so full of her stories and things that she said about all of you, and you’ve all touched her life, and hence ours. You’ll never be forgotten by us, certainly. We have children who were taken away prematurely from us, that should never happen to any parent."

"All I can say to all of you guys is that thank you for things you did for our daughter and Barney, and look out for each other. Thank you."

Featured Image Credit: BBC / Facebook / Spire Healthcare

Topics: UK News, Crime