Damilola Taylor's father Richard dies aged 75 after 'prolonged battle with prostate cancer'

23 March 2024, 14:57 | Updated: 24 March 2024, 15:03

Richard Taylor, Damilola Taylor's father, has died aged 75
Richard Taylor, Damilola Taylor's father, has died aged 75. Picture: Alamy

By Kit Heren

Richard Taylor, whose son Damilola was murdered in south-east London aged just ten, has died aged 75, his family have said.

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Mr Taylor, a former civil servant from Nigeria, became a campaigner against youth violence after the murder of Damilola in Peckham in November 2000.

A statement issued on behalf of his family said: "It is with a heavy heart that the family announce the death of our beloved father, grandfather and uncle, Mr Richard Adeyemi Taylor OBE, who sadly passed away in the early hours of Saturday March 23 at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Woolwich, after a prolonged battle with prostate cancer."

Sangita Myska pays tribute to Richard Taylor OBE

He said he wanted Damilola to be remembered as a boy of hope and for his legacy to be a better life and opportunities for underprivileged young people.

Damilola was just ten years old when he was stabbed to death in Peckham, south east London, in 2000.

Read more: Twenty years on: The death of Damilola Taylor

Read more: Damilola Taylor killer jailed again for driving into police officer

Richard Taylor, whose son Damilola Taylor was murdered at the age of just 10, has died
Richard Taylor, whose son Damilola Taylor was murdered at the age of just 10, has died. Picture: Alamy

His tragic killing, killed on his way home from a local library, became a high-profile case that rocked the country.

After three crown court trials, his two killers, brothers Ricky and Danny Preddie, were finally put behind bars.

Damilola Taylor was just ten years old when he was killed on November 27, 2000
Damilola Taylor was just ten years old when he was killed on November 27, 2000. Picture: PA

Damilola’s family had moved to England just four months earlier in hope of a better life.

Richard Taylor and his late wife Gloria were spurred on to set up a charity in their son's memory in the face of the tragedy of his death.

Danny Preddie (left) and his brother Ricky Preddie were both found guilty
Danny Preddie (left) and his brother Ricky Preddie were both found guilty. Picture: PA

Gloria died in 2008 after suffering a heart attack and Richard continued their work in the following years.

They were supported by famous faces including footballer Rio Ferdinand, who grew up in Peckham and backed the family in their charity work.

Star Wars actor John Boyega was a childhood friend of Damilola and he and his sister Grace were among the last people to see the 10-year-old alive before he walked home on the day he was murdered.

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