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Young Couple, Scottish Schoolgirl and Police Officer Identified as Manchester Victims

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A vigil on Wednesday in St Ann’s Square in Manchester, to commemorate the bombing victims. Credit Andrew Testa for The New York Time

A young couple, Chloe Rutherford, 17, and Liam Curry, 19, described by their families as wanting to “be together forever,” brought to 18 the number of publicly identified victims of the Manchester bombing, the worst attack on British soil since 2005.

And a further two victims were identified by their families as Eilidh MacLeod, 14, of the Isle of Barra, in Scotland, and Elaine McIver, an off-duty police officer in Cheshire.

The police have said they are confident they have identified all 22 people who died in the attack, but they added that they would not reveal names publicly until post-mortems are concluded, a process that could take several more days.

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Liam Curry and Chloe Rutherford

Some families and friends have confirmed the deaths of loved ones to the police, schools or on social media. Many of the victims were teenagers or parents waiting for their children after a concert.

Dozens more were hospitalized with injuries including severe burns, after Salman Abedi, a 22-year-old Briton of Libyan descent, detonated a homemade bomb outside the venue on Monday night.

As Britons try to come to terms with the human toll of the attack, they observed a moment of silence at 11 a.m. for those who died.

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Eilidh MacLeod Credit Greater Manchester Police, via Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

In a joint statement that the Greater Manchester Police posted on Facebook early Thursday, the families of Ms. Rutherford and Mr. Curry of South Shields, in northeast England, said the two were the personification of young and blooming love, eager to travel the world.

“Chloe always described herself as ditzy who Liam adored and would do anything for, including dealing with Chloe’s demands for chocolate,” the statement said. “They were perfect in every way for each other and were meant to be. They were beautiful inside and out to ourselves and our families, and they were inseparable. They wanted to be together forever -— and now they are.”

The MacLeod family confirmed Eilidh’s death in a statement that described her as “vivacious” and “full of fun.” She was a music lover, the family said, who was as at ease playing bagpipes in her band as she was listening to Ariana Grande, the pop star whose concert in Manchester was targeted in the attack.

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Elaine McIver Credit Greater Manchester Police, Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

“Our family is devastated and words cannot express how we feel at losing our darling Eilidh,” the statement said. The teenager had gone to the concert with a friend, Laura MacIntyre, who was hospitalized in serious condition, according to news reports.

Nicola Sturgeon, the first minister of Scotland, paid tribute to Ms. MacLeod on Twitter, calling it “heartbreaking news.”

Later on Thursday, the Greater Manchester Police issued a statement on behalf of the family of Elaine McIver, the Cheshire police officer who died in the attack, describing her as a fan of music with an “effervescent” personality.

The Manchester Bombing in Pictures

“Despite what has happened to her, she would want us all to carry on regardless, and not be frightened by fear tactics,” the statement said. “ Instead, she regularly urged us all to rise up against it.”

Other victims include an 8-year-old girl, Saffie Rose Roussos, and a couple, Angelika and Marcin Klis, who leave behind two daughters, Alex and Patrycja.

In a moving vigil Wednesday night in Bury, in Greater Manchester, Olivia Campbell, the mother of Charlotte Campbell, a 15-year-old who died in the bombing, made an emotional plea not to give into terrorism.

Earlier, when her daughter’s fate was unknown, Ms. Campbell had made a tearful appeal on television for information about Olivia’s whereabouts, becoming a powerful symbol of the suffering that the attack inflicted.

“Please stay together. Don’t let this beat any of us, please,” Ms. Campbell said at the vigil on Wednesday. “Don’t let my daughter be a victim.”

Source: NYT > World

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