The father of Nottingham attack victim Grace O’Malley-Kumar has described his daughter as an “angelic girl” during a poignant eulogy at her funeral.

The medical student, alongside history student Barnaby Webber, were found stabbed to death on Ilkeston Road on 13 June. They were both 19 years old.

Ian Coates, a 65-year-old school caretaker, was found stabbed to death on Magdala Road that same day.

Barnaby Webber. Pic: Family handout

Image: Barnaby Webber

Ian Coates  Pic:Huntingdon Academy

Image: Ian Coates. Pic: Huntingdon Academy

At least 1,000 guests attended Grace’s funeral at Westminster Cathedral in London, which is the largest Catholic church in England and Wales.

During the service, her father Dr Sanjoy Kumar said: “No father should be called upon to give a eulogy for their child.

“It’s not the natural order of things. It generally means something really unnatural has taken place and unfortunately for me, my beloved daughter Grace has been taken away from us.”

Dr Kumar said his daughter was dedicated to medicine and had volunteered to vaccinate people during the coronavirus pandemic.

Mourners gather beside the hearse outside Westminster Cathedral following the funeral of Grace O'Malley-Kumar. University of Nottingham student Grace was killed after being attacked in Nottingham on June 13. Picture date: Friday July 21, 2023.

Grace had also wanted to apply to the Royal Army Medical Corps to further her training – inspired by her father and uncle.

“I look back now and I am astonished by her resolve,” Dr Kumar said.

“Here we have a child who wanted to outdo her father and her uncle in public service.

“I have to ask, what kind of angelic child tries to outdo others in serving her country and her community, but that is exactly the sort of girl Grace was, she was truly amazing.”

Grace’s mother, Sinead O’Malley, told the congregation that her daughter had been “cruelly and inexplicably taken”.

Ms O’Malley said: “She came into our lives here in Westminster at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington.

“Her birth registered here, and it is now from Westminster that she will leave.

“Grace was such a perfect gift to us.”

The coffin of Grace O'Malley-Kumar is carried from her funeral at Westminster Cathedral, London. University of Nottingham student Grace was killed after being attacked in Nottingham on June 13. Picture date: Friday July 21, 2023

Image: At least 1,000 guests attended Grace’s funeral

A funeral for Barnaby Webber was held at Taunton Minster in Somerset earlier this month.

His parents attended today’s service, along with Sir Kenneth Olisa, the King’s representative in Greater London.

Valdo Calocane, a 31-year-old who used to study at the University of Nottingham, was charged with three counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder in June.

He will enter pleas in September, and a provisional trial date has been set for 12 January.

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