Grace O’Malley Kumar: Nottingham attack victim was an ‘immensely gifted’ London student and hockey player

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Southgate Hockey Club has paid tribute to Grace O’Malley Kumar, describing her as a “huge talent” and “much loved member” of the club.

Tributes have poured in for an “immensely gifted” and talented student and athlete who lost her life in the Nottingham attacks.

Grace O’Malley Kumar, 19, was a member of the England U16 and U18 hockey squads, as well as playing for Southgate Hockey Club and Woodford Wells Cricket Club in London.

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The hockey club, in Enfield, paid tribute to her describing her as a “huge talent” and “much loved member”.

In a social media post it wrote: “It is with profound sadness that we have learned of the death of Grace O’Malley Kumar, a huge talent & much loved member of Southgate U18’s & W1’s. We are shocked & devastated by the news,our thoughts & sincere condolences are with Grace’s family,friends and teammates.”

Grace O’Malley Kumar, 19, was a member of the England U16 and U18 hockey squads, as well as playing for Southgate Hockey Club and Woodford Wells Cricket Club in London.Grace O’Malley Kumar, 19, was a member of the England U16 and U18 hockey squads, as well as playing for Southgate Hockey Club and Woodford Wells Cricket Club in London.
Grace O’Malley Kumar, 19, was a member of the England U16 and U18 hockey squads, as well as playing for Southgate Hockey Club and Woodford Wells Cricket Club in London. | Credit: Southgate Hockey Club

Enfield North MP Feryal Clark added: “This is absolutely devastating news. My heart goes out to Grace’s family, friends and teammates in this difficult time.”

England Hockey said it is "deeply saddened" by her death.

The London-based team tweeted: “We are all deeply saddened by the news of the tragic death of Grace Kumar in Nottingham on Tuesday. Grace was a popular member of the England U16 and U18 squads and our thoughts are with Grace’s family, friends, teammates and the whole hockey community at this time.”

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Grace was a pupil at Bancroft’s School in north-east London before heading to Nottingham University to study medicine.

In a statement, the school said: “We are desperately shocked and saddened by Grace’s sudden death in these truly terrible circumstances.  She left Bancroft’s only last year and was a hugely important part of our community.

“An immensely gifted and dedicated scholar and sportswoman, she was hugely loved and greatly respected and admired by all.  She was outstanding in every respect and will be missed terribly.”

Grace O’Malley Kumar with her team mates at Southgate Hockey ClubGrace O’Malley Kumar with her team mates at Southgate Hockey Club
Grace O’Malley Kumar with her team mates at Southgate Hockey Club | Credit: Southgate Hockey Club

In a statement her family said: “Grace was an adored daughter and sister; she was a truly wonderful and beautiful young lady.

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“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. We request that all media outlets stop invading our privacy while we face this sorrow.”

Fellow Nottingham University student Barnaby Webber, also 19,  was killed in the attack. Fellow Nottingham University student Barnaby Webber, also 19,  was killed in the attack.
Fellow Nottingham University student Barnaby Webber, also 19, was killed in the attack. | Credit: Family handout

Fellow Nottingham University student Barnaby Webber, 19, and school caretaker Ian Coates were also killed in the series of linked attacks in the early hours of Tuesday.

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Grace and Barnaby were found dead on Ilkeston Road in Nottingham at 4am, before police rushed to Milton Street where there were reports that a van tried to run three people over.

Mr Coates, who was in his 50s, was stabbed at about 5:30am in Magdala Road, close to the school where he worked.

Police believe his van was then stolen and driven at three people in Milton Street, leaving one critically injured.

A 31-year-old man was tasered by officers before being arrested on suspicion of murder. He remains in custody.

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Chief Constable Kate Meynell, from Nottinghamshire Police, said on Tuesday night: “As you all know, today there has been a shocking and tragic series of events which has led to the lives of three innocent people being taken and left another member of the public in a critical condition in hospital.

“My thoughts are with all the families affected by this horrific incident, and we are working extremely hard to understand exactly what has happened.

“I can tell you that a 31-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder and remains in police custody. We are not looking for anyone else in connection with the attacks and I can reassure the public that it is safe to visit the city centre – though there may be some road restrictions as we continue to establish what has happened.”

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