Nottingham stabbing: ‘Words cannot explain our devastation,’ says Dr Sanjoy Kumar
The University of Nottingham on Wednesday (14) held a campus vigil in memory of their two students killed in the attack
Grace Kumar (L) with her family
The city of Nottingham in central England is in mourning on Thursday (15) as it prepares for a second vigil in memory of three people killed in a brutal stabbing spree, including British Indian teenage medical student Grace O’Malley Kumar.
The University of Nottingham on Wednesday (14) held a campus vigil in memory of their two students killed in the attack, which involved moving and tearful tributes from family, friends and fellow students.
“The love that we have out here, I just wish we had it everywhere. So, look after each other,” said Dr Sanjoy Kumar, fighting back his tears for his daughter.
“Grace was not just a sister to James but his best friend. He is completely heartbroken. As parents, words cannot explain our complete and utter devastation. She will be so dearly missed,” he said, joined by his Irish wife Sinead and son James.
There was also some laughter amid the tearful tributes, as Dr Kumar, a respected general practitioner (GP) from London, spoke of trying to persuade his daughter to come back home to visit.
“Grace was also like Barnaby, she loved coming up to Nottingham – in fact we couldn’t get her down [to London],” he said.
The family added they were proud of the teenager, who aspired to be a doctor. They added: “We were so incredibly proud of Grace’s achievements and what a truly lovely person she was. She was resilient and wise beyond her years.
“Grace was so happy in life fulfilling her ambition of studying to become a doctor whilst playing top-flight hockey at university. She leaves behind devastated extended family and friends.”
Grace, a first-year medical student, has been described as a talented hockey and cricket player who also played for the university.
Prof Shearer West, vice-chancellor of the University of Nottingham, said: “Grace was a medical student, thriving in her first year of study and inspired to a career in medicine by work placements in a GP surgery and her volunteering for the nationwide vaccination programme during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“She was a talented sportswoman, playing international hockey for both the U16 and U18 England Hockey Team and Essex U15 Women’s Cricket. She was held in the highest regard by her tutors and team mates alike.”
British Indian MP from Nottingham, Nadia Whittome, said that the city is shocked and devastated by the attack.
“Right now, this is a city in mourning… the whole city is shocked and devastated by this attack, which has killed three people and injured three, one of whom is in critical condition,” she said.
“Nothing like this has happened in Nottingham, certainly not in my lifetime. But our community does have a proud history of coming together and looking after one another in times like this and I know that this time will be no different.”