Along with youngsters, Manchester bombing killed at least 7 parents

In all, 22 killed, 59 wounded
Police patrol in central Manchester on May 24, 2017.
Police patrol in central Manchester on May 24, 2017.

LONDON — The world has been horrified by the young ages of many of the victims in the Manchester bombing, but on Wednesday, attention shifted to parents of concertgoers who were also killed. Seven have been identified, among them a couple who left behind two daughters.

Most of the parents had come to pick up their children and were waiting just outside the arena — exactly the spot the bomber hit. Among them were a Polish couple, Angelika and Marcin Klis, who were living in York, England. Their deaths were confirmed by the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

RELATED: Police hunt for accomplices in bombing as search extends to Libya
RELATED: Concert-hall managers vigilant after Manchester terror attack

They had driven their two daughters, Alex and Patrycja, to the concert and were to pick them up afterward. “The kids are safe,” the Polish foreign minister, Witold Waszczykowski, said Wednesday morning.

“One of the girls is underage,” he said, “so she is being looked after by child services.”

The Manchester Evening News identified two of the other parents, Alison Howe and Lisa Lees. The two women, who were friends, had been waiting for their daughters, both 15. Their daughters were safe, according to news reports.

Lee Hunter, Lees’ brother, paid tribute to her on Facebook. “For those who don’t know Lisa is gone but never ever forgotten I love you Lisa I’ll miss you so much,” he wrote. After the attack, desperate family members had turned to social media in search of the women’s whereabouts.

Police confirmed that an officer from the Cheshire constabulary in northwest England had been killed while attending the concert with her husband and two children. She was not named. News reports said her husband and children were injured.

Also among the parent victims identified in Britain’s deadliest terrorist assault since 2005 was a 51-year-old receptionist, Jane Tweddle, a mother of three daughters, who had gone to Manchester Arena with a friend to pick up the friend’s daughter.

Jane Bailey, principal of the school where Tweddle worked, South Shore Academy in Blackpool, Lancashire, said Tweddle was a “well-loved member of staff” who was “in many ways the public face of the school.”

Mark Taylor, Tweddle’s partner, told the BBC that he was in London for business. “One of my daughters rang me to tell me mum had gone missing and there was an explosion,” Taylor said. He said one of his daughters was traveling in Australia, and he was struggling to find a time to tell her.

Michelle Kiss, a mother of three, was also killed. She was at the concert with her daughter Millie, a child actress who news reports said has been in productions of “Annie” and “White Christmas.”

A few hours before the performance, Kiss posted a photograph of her daughter and a friend on Facebook and wrote: “Excited girlies ready to watch Ariana.” She also had a 17-year-old son, Elliot, and an older son, Dylan.

In all, 22 people died and 59 others were badly wounded when Salman Abedi, a 22-year-old Briton of Libyan descent, detonated a homemade bomb outside the arena on Monday night, at the end of a concert by the American pop singer Ariana Grande.

Those killed in the attack include Saffie Rose Roussos, 8; Georgina Bethany Callander, 18, a health and social care student; John Atkinson, who was in his late 20s; and Kelly Brewster, 32, who had been trying to shield her sister and niece from the blast.

Olivia Campbell, 15, was added to that grim roster Wednesday. Olivia, from the town of Bury in Greater Manchester, had been a big fan of Grande, and she was among the legions of mostly adolescent fans who had gone to the concert, some with their mothers in tow.

Her mother, Charlotte Campbell, said that the search for her daughter, which included a heart-wrenching appeal on television, had ended with devastating news.

“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,” Charlotte Campbell wrote on Facebook.

While Britain has experienced terrorism over several decades, the attack in Manchester was met with particular revulsion because it targeted young people. The Islamic State group has said it was responsible.

Two other 14-year-old victims were also identified.

One of them, Nell Jones, had an interest in farming, and was a bright and popular student at Holmes Chapel Comprehensive school in Cheshire, the school said in a statement. Jones was a member of the Knutsford Young Farmers, a Cheshire Young Farmers Club “dedicated to supporting young people in the agriculture and the countryside,” according to its website. The club confirmed her death on Facebook.

On Facebook, Nell had used her profile picture to commemorate events such as the Sept. 11 attacks and to show her support for victims of the Orlando, Florida, shooting last June.

The other 14-year-old was Sorrell Leczkowski, from Leeds, who had gone with her family to pick up her sister, who was attending the concert. The BBC reported that her mother and grandmother had both been hospitalized.

A public relations manager, Martyn Hett, from Stockport in Greater Manchester, was also killed. His death was confirmed on Twitter by a friend, Russell Hayward, and by his brother, Dan Hett.

Hett was such a devoted fan of “Coronation Street” that he had a tattoo on his leg of one of the soap opera’s characters, Deirdre Barlow, who was played by actress Anne Kirkbride. The tattoo led to his appearance on “Tattoo Fixers,” a British reality television series.

His social media posts showed a man with a good sense of humor, who loved to do impressions and dress as his favorite stars, including Kirkbride. He enjoyed the music of Mariah Carey and Michael Bolton. On Instagram, he posted photographs of a gay pride event in Brighton in August, and he was described as having been a vegan.

On Monday, the day of the concert, he had a glass of prosecco with his friend Stuart Aspinall before the two went to the show. Aspinall wrote on Instagram that he had not seen or heard from his friend since the explosion. Hett had been planning a trip to the United States and was so excited that he was counting down the days on his Facebook page.

The comedian Jason Manford, a family friend, had appealed on social media to try to find Hett. On Wednesday, Manford posted a single emoji: a broken heart.

Categories: -News-

Leave a Reply