MANCHESTER, England — They were parents, sons, daughters, sisters, brothers, friends, colleagues and classmates. Some were waiting to collect their children, others were enjoying what should have been a fun night of pop music.
Twenty-two people died in Monday’s concert attack in Manchester. Here are some of their stories.
Student John Atkinson from the Greater Manchester area is among the dead, according to local politician Ivan Lewis, who spoke to members of Atkinson’s family at a vigil in Radcliffe on Tuesday morning.
There was an outpouring of grief from friends and family on social media.
“Sleep tight John Atkinson. Thoughts and prayers with all your family and the other 21 people who lost there lives last night,” Lee Paul, one of Atkinson’s friends, said in a post on Facebook.
The principal of Bury College, where Atkinson was a student, told CNN that the community was “shocked and saddened.”
“We are shocked and saddened by the news of former Bury College student John Atkinson who sadly lost his life during Monday evening’s incident,” Bury College Principal Charlie Deane said in a statement. “Our thoughts go out to John’s family and friends.”
Freak Dance Radcliffe, a dance studio in his hometown, described Atkinson as a “member of our dance family” in a post on Facebook.
“John was always an amazingly happy gentle person and a real pleasure to teach when he came to our adult classes and even competed for Freak Dance,” the statement read. “Our thoughts are with the family at the very sad and hard time!”
Courtney Boyle, a 19-year-old from Gateshead, was killed at the concert alongside her stepfather Philip Tron, the family confirmed.
“My stunning amazing beautiful daughter, you were my rock, you made me so proud with all you had achieved, and my gorgeous crazy Philip, you made my world a happy place,” Boyle’s mother said in a statement. “Now you are both my angels flying high in the sky.”
“I am going to miss my baby girl Courtney Boyle for the rest of my life,” her father said.
Boyle’s boyfriend described her as an “adventurer” and a “precious, joyous soul.”
“She made people feel loved and feel safe,” he said, describing her as his soulmate. “No one had what that lass had, she was like no other … Nobody has ever made me as happy as her and I’m the person I am today because of her.”
Kelly Brewster’s partner, Ian John Winslow, informed his Facebook friends the night after the tragedy that she had died.
“Kelly really was the happiest she has ever been and we had so many things planned together,” he wrote.
Brewster lived in Sheffield, where The Star newspaper reported she went to the concert with her sister and a niece. They were injured in the blast as they were walking behind Brewster, the newspaper said, citing an uncle.
The Star also reported that Winslow’s father said Brewster, 32, and Winslow had been together for three years and had recently put down a deposit for a house and were thinking about having a baby.
A woman who was close with Brewster shared her memories on her Facebook page.
“Heaven has gained another angel Kelly, you were a hero right down to your last moments,” Payton Williams wrote. “I will always remember our dinners out in champs and you giving me to confidence to travel with contiki alone. I will always remember giving you a lift home when mum worked her late shifts because I didn’t want you to have to catch the bus. …
“I’ll remember you spilling drinks down your top at the house warming party and ending up in just a vest. I’ll remember you making paper games with Phoebe and ‘eating is cheating’.”
Superfan Georgina Callander was killed, according to Bishop Rawstorne Church of England Academy, where she had previously been a student.
The 18-year-old had tweeted at the pop star the day before the concert. “So excited to see u tomorrow,” she posted ahead of the show.
Peter Rawlinson, deputy headteacher at Bishop Rawstorne, told CNN that Callander’s family called the school with the news.
“Georgina was a lovely young student who was very popular with her peers and the staff and always made the most of the opportunities she had at the school,” the school said in a statement.
Callander met Grande in 2015. Photos on her Facebook page showed a fun-loving teenager who liked pop groups like One Direction and Fifth Harmony.
Olivia Campbell, a 15-year-old girl who attended the concert with her friend, died in the attack, according to a Facebook post on her mother’s page.
“RIP my darling precious gorgeous girl Olivia Campbell taken far far too soon go sing with the angels and keep smiling mummy loves you so much,” read the post by Charlotte Campbell.
Olivia’s mother and her stepfather Paul Hodgson issued an emotional plea on CNN on Tuesday, seeking help to find their daughter after they didn’t hear from her.
Campbell told CNN her daughter called from the venue before the attack.
“It was half past 8. She said the acts were amazing. She was waiting for Ariana to come on, she was so happy. She thanked me and said she loved me and that was the last I heard from her,” she said.
Liam Curry and Chloe Rutherford
The families of Chloe Rutherford, 17, and Liam Curry, 19, confirmed their deaths in a tribute released by Greater Manchester Police.
“On the night our daughter Chloe died and our son Liam died, their wings were ready but our hearts were not,” the tribute said.
The two “were perfect in every way for each other and were meant to be.”
“Chloe always described herself as ditzy, who Liam adored and would do anything for, including dealing with Chloe’s demands for chocolate,” the families said.
The two loved to travel together, exploring new cities.
“They wanted to be together forever and now they are,” the tribute said.
Gathered at a maypole in Otley, West Yorkshire, residents honored victims of the Manchester attack, including local resident Wendy Fawell, on Thursday morning.
“It is tragic to hear confirmation that Wendy Fawell was killed in the Manchester attack,” local politician Greg Mulholland said in a statement. “The whole town of Otley and neighboring communities are devastated at this news and are in mourning for Wendy.”
“When locals came together in a vigil in Otley on Tuesday night, [they] joined together in reflection and prayer in the hope that Wendy would be found safe, sadly that has not happened and the news that people feared has now come through,” he added.
St Oswald’s Church of England Primary School in Guiseley, where Fawell had worked, said on Twitter: “It is with deepest sadness that I confirm that our former colleague Wendy Fawell was killed in the Manchester bombing.”
Adam Fawell, believed to be Wendy’s son, confirmed her death in a post on a public Facebook group for those still missing after the Manchester blast.
“Didn’t survive the blast. R.I.P Mum xxx,” Fawell wrote.
Family and friends posted their condolences on social media, sharing photos of Fawell.
“I am heartbroken beyond belief. I have lost my best friend and [confidante] Wendy Fawell. A beautiful, lady who I will have treasured memories of. Nite god bless sweetheart,” Debbie Mcdowell said on Facebook.
Martyn Hett, a 29-year-old man from Greater Manchester, was named as one of the victims by his brother, Dan Hett.
“They found my brother last night. We are heartbroken,” Dan said in a tweet on Wednesday.
“Martyn was the icon of all our lives. His infectious laugh and his niche sense of humour will stay with us forever,” Hett’s family said in a statement. “He lived for every moment of every day and fitted an entire lifetime of memories into his 29 years.”
The news of Hett’s death triggered an outpouring of support on social media, where he had been very active. A huge Mariah Carey fan, Hett was honored by the pop star herself in a post on Instagram
Hett’s Instagram and Facebook accounts captured his vivacious personality in photos of him laughing with friends and family.
Hett’s close relationship with his mother made headlines last year when he posted about her knitting on Twitter. People came together to support her after she struggled to make any sales at her craft fair stall. He featured the full story in a Twitter moment, titled: “How Twitter fell in love with my mother.”
Alison Howe was at the Manchester Arena with a friend to pick up their daughters.
Her husband, Steve Howe, told CNN affiliate ITV that his daughter, Darcy, called after the explosion, saying her mother wouldn’t answer her phone.
Howe called his wife and then a friend who worked at the arena. He said he had hoped his wife was unable to answer her phone because she was unconscious.
Howe and her friend Lisa Lees were killed.
“I can’t describe the pain. And I’m not a weak man. We are broken in half,” Steve Howe told ITV. “I’ve still got enough in me to try to do something about this if other people will help me.”
ITV reported that Howe’s son Jason called his stepmother caring and beautiful.
“She was amazing to us all,” Jason Howe said.
Megan Hurley, a 15-year-old student from Halewood was killed in the attack, family friend Helen McDermott told CNN on Friday. She set up a fundraising page to help give “a beautiful send off for Megan who was taken far too early.”
A vigil was held for the teen at her school, Halewood Academy on Thursday afternoon.
Hurley’s aunt also confirmed the death on a message posted to Facebook, where she requested that reporters “give my family some privacy and respect at this devastating time.”
Holmes Chapel Comprehensive School & Sixth Form College have confirmed that one of their students, Nell Jones, a teenager from Cheshire, was among the dead.
“Nell’s family have been searching for her since the incident in the hope that they would find her being cared for in hospital. Unfortunately, the police have now confirmed that Nell died at the scene,” the school’s headteacher, Denis Oliver, said in a statement. “Nell was a very bright and popular student.”
According to the statement, one of her teachers, David Wheeler, said: “Nell was a very popular girl, always smiling, always positive. Her tutor group have been together since the transition from primary school. It feels like they have lost a sister not a classmate.”
Michelle Kiss, from Lancashire, was among those killed in the attack, her family said in a statement released by Greater Manchester Police.
The mother of three was described in the statement as a loving wife, mother, daughter and sister.
“Family was her life and we are all obviously devastated by her loss. She has been taken away from us, and all that love her, in the most traumatic way imaginable,” the statement read. “We hope to draw from the courage and strength she showed in her life to get through this extremely difficult time.”
Marcin and Angelika Klis
Alex Klis, a York College student, made an appeal on Facebook on Tuesday to help find her parents, Marcin and Angelika, who had been missing since the concert.
“Anyone who is in any safe place or hospital in Manchester, if anyone comes across my parents please please let me know as they’ve been missing ever since the attack, this is a picture taken tonight so this is exactly what they were wearing,” Alex said, sharing a photo of her parents.
The picture captured Marcin in a red polo shirt, smiling as he posed with his wife.
York College released a statement on Wednesday confirming that Klis’ parents had died in the attack.
“Everyone at York College is shocked and deeply saddened to learn that the parents of one of our students, Alex Klis, both died during the Manchester attack,” the statement read. “This is devastating news for Alex and her family, the whole College and the wider community.”
The Polish Foreign Ministry confirmed in a statement that two Polish nationals were killed in the attack. Minister Witold Waszczykowski told RMF FM that they were parents who were killed when they came to collect their daughters after the concert. Waszczykowski said that the children were safe.
Friends, loved ones and strangers have commented on Alex Klis’ photo on Facebook, sharing their condolences.
The family of a 14-year-old girl killed in the attack have paid tribute to their “rock.”
Michael Healey, grandfather of Sorrell Leczkowski, said he was “absolutely heartbroken” to confirm she was among the dead.
“Sorrell was only 14, but she was our rock, she kept us all grounded. She was such a clever, talented, creative girl, there was nothing she couldn’t do,” Healey said.
“She was going to be an architect and wanted to go to Columbia University in New York to study so that she could build hotels with slides coming out of the rooms and, so that she could build her mum a house,” he added.
Leczkowski, from Adel, Leeds, was with her mother and grandmother when she died — they were both injured in the bombing.
“My wife is currently in intensive care, and Samantha is recovering from surgery as she tries to make sense of the devastating loss of her daughter,” Healey said.
A statement released by Leczkowski’s school described her as a “delightful member” of the community.
“Sorrell … enjoyed her studies, had a lovely group of friends and was a real asset to Allerton High School,” headteacher Elaine Silson said.
Lisa Lees was waiting for her daughter in the foyer of Manchester Arena with her friend, Alison Howe, when the bomb exploded.
ITV News reported her brother, Lee Hunter, posted this message 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.”
Her uncle, Philip Hunter, told ITV News that Lees’ father had died not long ago.
The family of Eilidh MacLeod released a statement saying that they were devastated to learn of the 14-year-old’s death.
“Words cannot express how we feel at losing our darling Eilidh,” the statement reads.
MacLeod, from the Scottish island of Barra, was described by her family as a “vivacious” young woman.
“Eilidh was vivacious and full of fun. She loved all music whether it was listening to Ariana or playing the bagpipes with her pipe band. As a family we would like to express our thanks and gratitude for the support and kind messages we have received at this difficult time.”
Friends from MacLeod’s small island community and across Scotland shared their condolences on social media.
“A stunningly beautiful, talented lovely girl who will be missed so dearly by all who knew her. My heart breaks for Marion, Roddy, Shona & Laura. Sleep tight Eilidh – ‘gus am bris an là xxx,” Annie-Theresa MacDonald said in a post on Facebook.
MacLeod was at the concert with her friend, Laura MacIntyre, who was injured.
“Our daughter Laura is a funny and witty young girl who excels at everything she does,” MacIntyre’s family said in a statement posted to the Manchester police Twitter account.
“Laura and her friend Eilidh were so looking forward to the concert, but that night has now ended in tragedy where Eilidh has lost her life and Laura is in critical condition. Our hearts and minds have been with Eilidh’s family since we heard their news.”
A police officer killed in the Manchester attack was named Thursday as 43-year-old Elaine McIver, an off-duty officer with Cheshire Police.
“Elaine was a much loved daughter, sister, auntie, friend and colleague, the best we could ever have wished for,” McIver’s family said in a statement. “She was everyone’s friend, thoughtful beyond belief with an effervescent and outgoing personality.”
“Elaine just loved life, and had a major love of music. Despite what has happened to her, she would want us all to carry on regardless and not be frightened by fear tactics, instead she regularly urged us all to rise up against it,” they added.
Cheshire Police released a statement confirming McIver’s death on Thursday, saying that her loss was felt across the force and the wider community.
“Friends who knew her well have described her as big hearted, bubbly and a positive person. We are supporting her family at this very difficult time, and will be providing support for friends and colleagues from the Constabulary as we come to terms with the loss of an officer in such tragic and heart-rending circumstances. We will not let evil win,” the force’s statement said.
Saffie Rose Roussos
An 8-year-old described as a “beautiful little girl,” was among those killed in a bomb attack at the Ariana Grande concert.
Lancashire County Council confirmed that Saffie Rose Roussos, 8, from Leyland was killed.
“Saffie was simply a beautiful little girl in every aspect of the word,” Chris Upton, headteacher at Tarleton Community Primary School, said. “She was loved by everyone and her warmth and kindness will be remembered fondly. Saffie was quiet and unassuming with a creative flair.”
“News of Saffie’s death in this appalling attack has come as a tremendous shock to all of us and I would like to send our deepest condolences to all of her family and friends. The thought that anyone could go out to a concert and not come home is heartbreaking,” Upton added.
Philip Tron, 32, was remembered by his family as a “fun loving, energetic soul.”
“Philip was such a fun loving, energetic soul, he would light up the darkest room and lift your spirits with his infectious laugh, witty sense of humor and his beautiful smile,” Tron’s mother said in a statement.
Tron, from Gateshead, died with his stepdaughter, Courtney Boyle, 19.
Jane Tweddle, a mother of three from Blackpool, was named as one of the victims by South Shore Academy, where she was a member of the staff.
“Jane was a truly wonderful friend and colleague to all of us at South Shore Academy. As our receptionist, she was in many ways, the public face of the school and she represented us amazingly in this role,” Jane Bailey, principal of South Shore Academy, said in a statement.
“We have received numerous messages of condolences from parents, students, community members and colleagues across Blackpool for which we are very grateful. All of them say the same things about our lovely Jane… bubbly, kind, welcoming, funny, generous… the list goes on.”
The school told CNN the family had confirmed the death to local station, BBC Radio Lincolnshire.