London attack victims: Police officer, teacher, American tourist killed
LONDON — The three people killed in the London terror attack were a veteran policeman, a teacher and an American tourist.
Kurt Cochran, who was visiting London from Utah with this wife, died as a result of injuries sustained in the attack, his family and church said.
Aysha Frade, a 43-year old teacher with family in Spain, was identified as another victim.
Keith Palmer, a 48-year-old father and husband, was the unarmed police officer on duty at the gates of Parliament when the attacker stabbed him to death.
A wedding anniversary
Cochran and his wife, Melissa, were visiting London to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary when they attack was launched. His death was confirmed by family and his church.
His wife, Melissa Cochran, suffered a broken leg, broke rib, and a cut to her head but will recover from her injuries, her brother Clint Payne said in a message on social media.
“Our hearts are broken this day as we say goodbye to our dear brother-in-law Kurt. He passed away from the injuries sustained in the London terrorist attack yesterday. We love him so much and will never forget him.”
He said he was grateful his sister would recover.
“Our hearts ache for her and their children in losing their loving companion and father. Please continue to pray for our family. Thank you.”
Police earlier said the victim was in his mid-50s.
‘A lovely man’
Prime Minister Theresa May paid tribute to Palmer in Parliament on Thursday, where MPs had earlier observed a minute of silence for the victims.
“He was a husband and a father, killed doing a job he loved. He was every inch a hero, and his actions will never be forgotten,” she said.
After Palmer was stabbed, bystanders rushed to his aid. As he lay bleeding on the cobblestone street, Conservative MP Tobias Ellwood gave him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, to no avail.
“Keith Palmer was killed while bravely doing his duty, protecting our city and the heart of our democracy from those who want to destroy our way of life,” London Mayor Sadiq Khan said.
“He personifies the brave men and women of our police and emergency services who work around the clock to keep us safe — tonight all Londoners are grateful to them.”
At Scotland Yard, headquarters of London’s police force, flags were flying at half-staff on Wednesday evening, in honor of Palmer and the other victims.
His death drew tributes from politicians including Conservative James Cleverly, who said he served with Palmer in the Royal Artillery before he became a “copper.”
“A lovely man, a friend. I’m heartbroken,” Cleverly said on Twitter.
The mayor of Betanzos in Spain, Ramon Garcia Vasquez, confirmed the death of Frade. She had lived in London for several years with her Portuguese husband, he said, but she had relatives in Betanzos.
“We are totally overwhelmed by the news and we send our condolences to the people in London,” Garcia Vasquez told CNN.
Frade worked at the DLD College London as an administrator, the college principal Rachel Borland said in a statement.
“We are all deeply shocked and saddened at the news that one of the victims yesterday was a member of our staff, Aysha Frade. All our thoughts and our deepest sympathies are with her family. We will be offering every support we can to them as they try to come to terms with their devastating loss.
“Aysha worked as a member of our administration team at the college. She was highly regarded and loved by our students and by her colleagues. She will be deeply missed by all of us.”
Around 40 others were injured in the attack as the driver plowed into a crowd on Westminster Bridge, a popular spot for tourists to take photos of London’s landmarks, including the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben.
Among them were 12 British nationals who have been hospitalized, Prime Minister May told Parliament. She added the victims came from France, Romania, South Korea, Germany, Poland, Ireland, China, Italy, the United States and Greece.
The injured included three police officers, who were returning from an event to recognize their bravery, she said. Two of them remain in a serious condition.
The French Foreign Ministry said that the three children were on a school trip to London and were from the Saint-Joseph school in Concarneau. It gave no word on the extent of their injuries.
A man and three women in their 50s and 60s from South Korea suffered fractures, while another woman in her 60s needed surgery after sustaining a serious head injury.
“(Foreign Minister) Jean-Marc Ayrault supports the families of our compatriots concerned in this difficult time,” the statement said.
In Australia, Attorney General George Brandis told the Senate a female permanent resident from South Australia had been hospitalized after the attack.