Funeral of gunman who left legacy of pain

Mass killer Derrick Bird's sons last night paid tribute to him at his funeral, the final of 13 services held in just a week.

Friends and some relatives gathered to commemorate his life at Distington Crematorium, also the venue for funerals for several of Bird's victims.

Those attending included his sons Graeme and Jamie Bird, their mother Linda Mills and uncle Brian Bird.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Other family members stayed away, including his nieces Rachel, 28, Tracey, 26, and Katie, 19. Their father David – Bird's twin brother – was his first victim in his shooting rampage across Cumbria on June 2.

At last night's funeral, family friend Brian Spencer read a statement on behalf of Graeme, 28, and Jamie, 16.

He said: "Derrick was many things to many people. But to us he was just dad. To us he was a loving and caring family man.

"He was well known and well respected in our local community. We will never understand what was going on in his mind on Wednesday June 2. Or why he killed and injured so many people.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"All we can say is that we are utterly devastated by his actions and deeply saddened by the legacy of pain he has left behind.

"Our love, thoughts and sympathies are with all the families that are suffering at this time."

Bird's nieces issued a statement which read: "As you can imagine this has been a very hard time for our family and at this present moment we do not feel physically and emotionally strong enough to attend the funeral." About 80 people attended the 50-minute service.

Bird's mother, Mary, 87, was also too distraught to attend.

Instead, a parallel memorial following the same Order of Service was conducted in her bedroom at Cockermouth Hospital.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The final funeral for Bird's victims was held in Luton yesterday. Bird's relatives insisted that his funeral would be held last as a mark of respect to those he killed.

Estate agent Jamie Clark was driving through Seascale from a viewing when Bird shot him.

Mourners flocked to the private service at the Vale Crematorium in Luton, Bedfordshire.

Mr Clark's fiancee Leanne Jarman, 21, parents Richard and Jane, 56 and 51, from Northall, near Leighton Buzzard, Beds, and brother Andrew, 26, were among the mourners.

Related topics: