/Liverpool man killed in attack was best son you could wish for

Liverpool man killed in attack was best son you could wish for

A dearly loved teacher from Liverpool who was killed in a suspected terror attack in Reading has been described as a “wonderful man”.

James Furlong, a history and politics teacher at The Holt School in Wokingham, was tragically killed in Saturday’s knife attack in Forbury Gardens, Reading.

Along with Mr Furlong, two other people were killed.

Khairi Saadallah, 25, from the town, was arrested on Saturday on suspicion of the attack and police say they are not looking for anyone else over the terror incident.

Mr Furlong’s devastated family paid tribute to him, describing him as “wonderful”.

His parents, Gary and Janet, said: “James was a wonderful man. He was beautiful, intelligent, honest and fun.

“He was the best son, brother, uncle and partner you could wish for. We are thankful for the memories he gave us all. We will never forget him and he will live in our hearts forever.”

St Francis Xavier’s College of Woolton Liverpool also paid tribute.

In a statement on social media, it said: “Devastated to hear the news that Old Xaverian James Furlong was murdered last night in Reading. He was an inspirational History teacher and his Headteacher has spoken highly of him as a teacher and person.

“Our prayers are with him and his family.”

Shelley Craine wrote: “We are truly devastated and heartbroken this amazing man was taken away from us. I love you Cuz and will always remember you xxx it’s not fair.”

And Von Lydiate said: “Deeply saddened and former class friend when we were children. My heart goes out to the family. RIP James.”

A former classmate who attended St Michaels school on West Derby Road with Mr Furlong described him as “a kind and gentle lad”, adding that his death was “so sad.”

(Image: Facebook/James Furlong)

Former pupils have also paid tribute to James Furlong, who was a history and politics teacher.

Jade Simon, a pupil at The Holt from 2012-2017, said: “He really was an incredible teacher.

“He was funny and kind and always made history fun and entertaining. History was always one of my favourite subjects and Mr Furlong always encouraged it.”

Keith Power, whose daughter attends the school, said: “He was a wonderful man. He was so helpful and supportive of my daughter. He had a real passion for history and teaching and was so caring of his pupils.

“It’s so senseless. So much hatred in the world right now. I fear for my kid’s futures.”

(Image: PA)

In a statement Anne Kennedy and Katie Pearce, the co-headteachers at the Holt School, said: “James was very kind and a gentleman. He had a real sense of duty and cared for each and everyone of our students.

“He truly inspired everyone he taught through his passion for his subject and his dedication.”

Councillor James Box, who lives in Wokingham, described Mr Furlong as an excellent teacher who was head of history.

He said: “He was one of the teachers who taught my daughter Ellie. This has come as a real shock to us all. The school put out a message to parents to say he was one of these who died.”

Councillor Box said: “James was a very good teacher – excellent. I did not know him very well though. He was very popular at The Holt.”

The local church will also be opened from 9am for people to go and light a candle in his memory.

(Image: Getty Images)

A 25-year-old man arrested in connection with last night’s attack that left three people dead has been named as Khairi Saadallah.

Saadallah, a refugee from Libya, is being held by police after three others were also seriously injured in a knife attack in a park in Forbury Gardens at roughly 7pm on Saturday.

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Sources have told the BBC he is originally from Libya and was brought to the attention of MI5 in 2019 after they received information he had aspirations to travel abroad potentially for terrorism.

The BBC says when the information was investigated, no genuine threat was found and so a case file was not opened.

A security source earlier told PA news agency the suspect is a Libyan asylum seeker and mental health is being considered a major factor in the incident.

Original Source