Martyn Hett, 29, was one of 22 people killed by a bomb at the Manchester Arena at an Ariana Grande concert in May. He had a huge Twitter following and was well-known for his hilarious posts about pop culture – especially his true obsession, Coronation Street. His mum Figen Murray even called him an ‘iconic diva’.
And Murray has now weighed in on the ongoing row over Donald Trump’s refusal to apologise for retweeting anti-Muslim videos from far-right group Britain First.
On Wednesday, Trump doubled down on his insensitive behaviour. He said: “@Theresa_May, don’t focus on me, focus on the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism that is taking place within the United Kingdom. We are doing just fine!”
In response, Martyn’s mum wrote: “My son Martyn Hett was killed at Manchester arena. So I experienced terror first hand. But spreading racist material is equal to throwing petrol into a burning fire. Anger breeds anger, hate breeds hate! Please just stop all this hate campaign.”
She added that she had no motive “other than despairing that terrorists want to create hate, anger and fear yet here is someone who does the same very unashamedly and publicly. I live life by one act of kindness each day. I prefer my way for sure! I am not a politician. Just feel it is inappropriate for a world leader to use Twitter in such a way. Not claiming to know the answers but I trust my instincts and everything about his tweets felt wrong.”
Her heartfelt words caught the imagination of other people on Twitter and seemed to perfectly capture the collective exasperation at Trump’s behaviour.
Staffordshire police chief constable Gareth Morgan said: “Dignified & heartfelt. A lesson in restraint & humanity. Thank you @FigenMurray”.
Vicky Walker added: “So moved and awed by this family’s amazing open heartedness in face of awful loss - humbled by @FigenMurray”.
And BBC journalist Julia Macfarlane wrote: “The grace and dignity that your family have shown throughout that tragic nightmare epitomised our highest ideals, and demonstrated the principles we all must strive for. I have so much admiration for you, and I’m so sorry Martyn was taken from you.”
While Trump hasn’t yet responded to Murray’s posts, he has an unfortunate history of attacking the families of people who have died. He caused near universal outrage last summer when he launched a verbal assault on Khizr Khan and his wife Ghazala, whose son, US Army Capt. Humayun Khan, was killed by a suicide bomber in Iraq in 2004.
It’s a long shot, but let’s hope Trump reads these tweets and maybe, just maybe reflects on what he’s done.
(Image: Twitter / Rex)