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‘Ge­orgina was just a nor­mal lit­tle girl, not a bad bone in her body... she Fam­ily pay emo­tional gave so much trib­ute to teenager love and had so killed by bomber much more to give’

- Supermodels · Viral · Bullying · Gossip · Celebrities · Society · Manchester · Ariana Grande · Manchester Arena

THE par­ents of a teenager mur­dered in the Manch­ester Arena at­tack told of their pain and anger as they gave ev­i­dence to a pub­lic in­quiry.

Ge­orgina Cal­lan­der was aged just 18 when she died in the ter­ror at­tack af­ter a con­cert by Ari­ana Grande, the singer she adored.

Dad Si­mon Cal­lan­der said he hoped bomber Sal­man Abedi “rots in the deep­est, dark­est part of hell” and Ge­orgina’s mum Les­lie stated: “I wish it would have been me, and not her.”

Mr Cal­lan­der said “evil” Sal­man Abedi had “snatched away” the po­ten­tial of his daugh­ter, who “gave so much love and had so much more to give”.

He tear­fully told the pub­lic in­quiry into the at­tack that Ge­orgina drove to the Ari­ana Grande con­cert on May 22 2017 in her first car af­ter com­plet­ing her ex­ams.

Miss Cal­lan­der, from Hes­keth Bank, was en­joy­ing the in­de­pen­dence that a car and a part-time job pro­vided as she looked ahead to study­ing at univer­sity, he ex­plained.

In an emo­tional video trib­ute he out­lined her life from the day she was born, April 1 1999, to the fate­ful day when Abedi killed her and 21 oth­ers by det­o­nat­ing a bomb at the end of the con­cert.

He said: “This lit­tle bun­dle of joy be­came the glue that held our fam­ily to­gether.

“Bright as a but­ton, heart as big as the moon, funny, car­ing, warm and al­ways laugh­ing. Ev­ery day I hear that laugh, it’s like she is still here.

“To this day I stand in the win­dow look­ing for her, walk­ing back down the road af­ter school.

“Some­times other school kids re­mind me of her for a sec­ond but no, that’s not my Ge­orgina.”

He de­scribed how she “ab­so­lutely loved” work­ing part-time at the lo­cal Booths su­per­mar­ket where she “made the deli counter her own”.

Mr Cal­lan­der said: “Lots of peo­ple came up to me and said what a lovely, pleas­ant girl she was and how proud I should be.”

Then she passed her driv­ing test first time and “couldn’t wait to get on the road” with her new car which she af­fec­tion­ately called Peggy, the hear­ing at Manch­ester Mag­is­trates’ Court was told.

Mr Cal­lan­der said: “Peggy would un­for­tu­nately be Ge­orgina’s one and only car. She even drove to the con­cert that night to watch Ari­ana Grande.

“You can’t imag­ine how ex­cited she was. Just a nor­mal lit­tle girl, not a bad bone in her body, never hurt any­one, she gave so much love and had so much more to give.”

Miss Cal­lan­der was “over the moon” when she was ac­cepted on a pae­di­atric nurs­ing course at Edge Hill Univer­sity, he said.

He went on: “Sadly she never got to go and she never got to see her exam re­sults. She got all dis­tinc­tions.

“When they ar­rived in the post it was an­other dag­ger to the heart. All that hard work for noth­ing.

“All that po­ten­tial snatched away by an evil per­son who did not even know her or care about my lit­tle girl.

“A per­son who did not know what a very spe­cial per­son he was about to mur­der. I hope he rots in the deep­est, dark­est part of hell.

“I am so proud to stand here and say I am Ge­orgina’s dad. She changed my life and I will never get over los­ing her.

“Her smile lasted for­ever, her smile I can pic­ture ev­ery day. Her laugh­ter that once echoed all over the house has gone.

“For me things have changed so much. My life is un­recog­nis­able from what it was. Such a mas­sive hole is left.

“Ill health, di­vorce, a black cloud that fol­lows me con­stantly, some­times it feels like it is go­ing to swal­low me up.

“I can see Ge­orgina in ev­ery­thing. Some­times I can hear her when the house is quiet. I find my­self talk­ing to her and chuckle to my­self but then sad­ness takes over.

Ear­lier, Mrs Cal­lan­der’s mother told the hear­ing of how she wished she would have died in­stead.

In a highly emo­tive video trib­ute, she said her daugh­ter’s mur­der had turned her life into a ‘daily, liv­ing night­mare’.

She said: “I am noth­ing with­out my Ge­orgina. Ev­ery­thing has been taken away from me, in a nanosec­ond.”

Mrs Cal­lan­der de­scribed Ari­ana Grande ‘su­per­fan’ Ge­orgina as ‘like a beau­ti­ful melody’ who ‘lit up the room with her fa­mous smile’.

But she said her life had ‘com­pletely fallen apart, never to be re­paired’ af­ter her daugh­ter’s death.

In the video in­ter­view shown at the in­quiry last Wed­nes­day, she said: “I find it ex­cru­ci­at­ingly hard to live with­out my Ge­orgina.

“I wish it would have been me, and not her. For me, it’s a daily liv­ing night­mare.

“I miss our cud­dles, which she gave me at least 50 of a day, and I miss our girly chats.”

Ge­orgina was in her sec­ond year study­ing health and so­cial care at

 ?? Gra­ham More­ton -–Tar­leton Pho­tog­ra­phy ?? A me­mo­rial plaque and bench to Ge­orgina out­side Booths in Hes­keth Bank where she worked
Gra­ham More­ton -–Tar­leton Pho­tog­ra­phy A me­mo­rial plaque and bench to Ge­orgina out­side Booths in Hes­keth Bank where she worked
 ??  ?? Ge­orgina with singer Ari­ana Grande, who she had gone to see in con­cert on the night of the at­tack
Ge­orgina with singer Ari­ana Grande, who she had gone to see in con­cert on the night of the at­tack
 ??  ??

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