ONE of the victims of yesterday’s attacks in Nottingham was from a well-known Irish medical family.
Grace O’Malley-Kumar and fellow University of Nottingham student Barnaby Webber, both 19, were found dead in the city at around 4am on Tuesday after being stabbed.
Shortly after, Ian Coates, 65, was found dead from knife injuries around two miles away after he was attacked and had his van stolen.
A 31-year-old man remains in custody after being arrested on suspicion of murder.
‘Wonderful and beautiful’
Ms O’Malley-Kumar was a first-year medical student at the university, hoping to follow in the footsteps of other family members.
The Irish Times reports that she is the daughter Sinead O’Malley, an Irish-born, London-based consultant anaesthetist.
Meanwhile, her grandfather, Professor Kevin O’Malley, is also an anaesthetist as well as a former registrar and chief executive of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.
In a statement, Ms O’Malley-Kumar’s family described her as ‘resilient and wise beyond her years’.
“Grace was an adored daughter and sister; she was a truly wonderful and beautiful young lady,” read a statement.
“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.
“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 topflight hockey at university.
“She leaves behind devastated extended family and friends.”
At a vigil at the University of Nottingham this afternoon, Ms O’Malley-Kumar’s father Sanjoy said she loved studying in the city and thanked those who came out to remember her and Mr Webber.
“The love that we have out here, I just wish we had it everywhere, so look after each other,” he said.
“Look after your friends and look after people around you, it’s so important.”
The family of Mr Webber described him as a ‘beautiful, brilliant, bright young man’.
The history student from Taunton in Somerset was also a talented cricket player who had been selected to play for the university team.
“Complete devastation is not enough to describe our pain and loss at the senseless murder of our son,” they said.
“Barnaby Philip John Webber was a beautiful, brilliant, bright young man, with everything in life to look forward to.
“He was a talented and passionate cricketer, who was over the moon to have made selection to his university cricket team.
“At 19 he was just at the start of his journey into adulthood and was developing into a wonderful young man.
“As parents we are enormously proud of everything he achieved and all the plans he had made.
“His brother is bereft beyond belief, and at this time we ask for privacy as a family to be allowed time to process and grieve.”
Mr Coates, the third victim of Tuesday’s attacks, was described as a ‘beloved and respected’ member of staff at the school where he worked as a site manager.
Ross Middleton, Executive Headteacher of Huntingdon Academy, added: “Ian was a much-loved colleague who always went the extra mile for the benefit of our children and will be greatly missed.”
Ms O’Malley-Kumar and Mr Webber were attacked on Ilkeston Road in Nottingham at around 4am on Tuesday, June 13.
The suspect is then believed to have attacked Mr Coates on Magdala Road before taking his van.
The vehicle was used by the suspect to run over three members of the public in the nearby Milton Street area in the city centre.
One man remains in hospital in a critical condition.
Police managed to detain the suspect a short time later by using a taser after he abandoned the vehicle and approached officers with a knife.
“I am very aware of the impact that these horrendous crimes will have had not only on Nottingham and Nottinghamshire but also across the whole country,” said Chief Constable Kate Meynell.
“I am determined that we will work with community members, students from both universities and others impacted to reassure and support them.
“It is important that as a city we stand together.”