A tribute to Kelly Brewster who died in the Manchester attack

                       Kelly & Ian


Four days ago the unimaginable happened, a suicide bomber entered the the Manchester Arena and took the lives of 22 people and injured many more. Amongst those 22 was my friend Kelly Brewster.

Good people do bad things
Bad people do good things
But if the choice is between
Love and fear
I choose love
 (Imelda May)

At exactly 22.30 on Tuesday evening my heart broke into tiny pieces.

My husband Mark and I were sat together constantly checking social media and watching the news praying and praying for the opposite news we received from Ian at that moment. As our hearts exploded, the tears were uncontrollable. Our lovely, giggly, ditzy, funny friend Brucey was gone. There were no words. There still aren’t.

Brucey was even more wonderful than all the outpourings on social media state. Believe all those things for they are understatements. She was the complete opposite of the man who selfishly took her life as she selflessly saved the niece and sister who she so completely adored.

As we spent the day yesterday with friends in Sheffield trying to process and understand what had happened, our only salvation was that Brucey really was the happiest she had ever been.

With the deposit paid for her new home, she was about to start the next chapter of her life with a very real Prince Charming and his gorgeous daughter Phoebe. I still recall the moment we first met Ian, when Brucey brought him up to visit us in Newcastle, a couple of months after she had met him.

Ian is as genuine, kind and loving as Brucey and anyone who saw them together knew instantly what real love was. A few months later I recall her excitedly counting down the days to the Justin Bieber concert she had convinced Ian to go to, before revealing to his sheepish admittance that her Prince Charming was now a fully-fledged Belieber.

Sitting and talking about Brucey meant that the tears became intermittent as her infectious zest for life, unforgettable laugh and gorgeous wide smile were found in every memory that we shared.

From her obsession with One Direction, with a strange preference for Louis against my own Harry leaning – something we could never agree on, but realised it was better that way as at least we wouldn’t have to share them when we did finally bag our boys.

To her love of travel. Brucey never let anyone or anything stop her enjoyment in life. If she wanted to do something, see something or say something she would and she would do so with full passion and real heart – something very few of us can say we actually do in life.

As Kelly will have been singing her heart out and dancing along to Ariana with Hollie and Claire, I was with my friend Nicola watching Imelda May at the Birmingham Symphony Hall.

While we sang and danced along to Johnny Got A Boom. It is Imelda’s hauntingly moving tribute to Thomas Ayad and Marie Mosser, alongside all the other victims of the Bataclan bombings that keeps playing through my mind. Brucey chose love. That echoes through her life to her very heroic goodbye and that is something we all need to remember and celebrate.

And most importantly she was not alone. In that arena there were over 20,000 people watching a concert by a performer they loved. The evening was one full of happiness and heart and as we all mourn those who are no longer with us and pray for those still fighting for survival, let’s all make sure to learn to live in love.

Every one of us needs to carry a little bit of Kelly Brewster, Chloe Rutherford, Liam Curry, Georgina Callandar, John Atkinson, Saffie Roussos, Alison Howe, Lisa Lees, Olivia Campbell, Angelika and Martin Klis, Martyn Hett, Nell Jones, Jane Tweddle-Taylor, Michelle Kiss, Eilidh MacLeod, Courtney Boyle, Philip Tron, Wendy Fawell, Sorrell Leczowski, Megan Hurley and Elaine McIver.

PS: Brucey, if I manage to get my hands on Harry tickets for his upcoming shows I promise that just for you I will concede that Louis is the greatest 1D member ever and I will turn up wearing a Louis T-Shirt and wave an I Love Louis More flag just for you. We love you so much.

Jeremy Williams-Chalmers writes for Music-News.com. Our deepest sympathy goes out to all those affected by this tragedy. music news.com

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