Tears for crossbow victims: emotional church-goers weep after racing commentator's wife and daughters killed

11 July 2024, 12:20 | Updated: 11 July 2024, 12:36

Tearful scenes in church as a vigil is held for the victims of the crossbow attack
Tearful scenes in church as a vigil is held for the victims of the crossbow attack. Picture: Alamy/Facebook

By Asher McShane

A vigil for the three women killed in a crossbow attack in Hertfordshire was held at a church today, as tributes continue to pour in for the victims.

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Tearful residents  gathered at St James’ Church in Bushey this morning after the deaths of racing commentator John Hunt’s wife Carol, 61 and two of his daughters, Hannah, 28 and Louise, 25.

On an altar inside the church, three candles burned beside a vase containing three large red roses, in tribute to the victims.

Father David Stevenson said the killings have brought the community together as “one big family”.

Three candles displayed in church beside a vase containing three large red roses, in tribute to the victims
Three candles displayed in church beside a vase containing three large red roses, in tribute to the victims. Picture: Alamy

Colleagues of victim Hannah Hunt, 28, have paid tribute to the “fantastic therapist”.

In a post on Facebook, The Anti-Ageing Clinic based in Radlett, Hertfordshire, said it was with “deep regret and sadness” that they learned of the “horrific murder on Tuesday night of our skin therapist Hannah”.

“She was a fantastic therapist and clients loved her,” the tribute continued.

Read more: ‘Screams and absolute chaos... and then armed police arrived’ how the hunt for crossbow murder suspect unfolded

Read more: Home Secretary considering tougher crossbow laws after Bushey triple-killing, security minister tells LBC

Church-goers were left in tears as tributes were paid to victims of the attack
Church-goers were left in tears as tributes were paid to victims of the attack. Picture: Alamy

“We send our condolences and prayers to her Dad, sister and family.

“She was very much a part of our team. Please bear with us at this terrible time.”

Colleagues of racing commentator Mr Hunt have also said they are "heartbroken" for the BBC Radio 5 Live racing commentator after three members of his family were killed in a crossbow attack.

Louise Hunt, 25, and Hannah Hunt, 28, were killed alongside her mother Carol Hunt, 61
Louise Hunt, 25, and Hannah Hunt, 28, were killed alongside her mother Carol Hunt, 61. Picture: Facebook

His wife Carol Hunt, 61, and two of their daughters, Hannah, 28, and Louise, 25, were found dead on Tuesday in a house in a quiet cul-de-sac in Bushey, Hertfordshire.

A manhunt was launched for the suspect Kyle Clifford, 26, and he remains in hospital after he was found with injuries in Lavender Hill Cemetery in Enfield, north London, Hertfordshire Police said.

John Hunt with his wife Carol, who died in the attack
John Hunt with his wife Carol, who died in the attack. Picture: Facebook

Speaking on BBC Radio 2's The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show, journalist Mike Williams interrupted his sports update to speak about Mr Hunt's loss.

He said: "Can I just echo your words from (Zoe) earlier in the show by sending all love, condolences and support to our much-loved BBC Sport colleague John Hunt after the unspeakable tragedy concerning his family that was in the news yesterday.

"John is a wonderful man and we of course send him all our love."

A resident leaves flowers at the scene of the attack
A resident leaves flowers at the scene of the attack. Picture: Alamy

Ball said earlier: "I must say, everyone at the BBC (is) heartbroken and deeply shocked at the news.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with John Hunt. Mark Chapman, his friend, paid (an) emotional tribute yesterday on BBC (Radio) 5 Live - we are holding you in our heart, John."

On Wednesday, before England beat the Netherlands in the Euro 2024 semi-final in Dortmund, Radio 5 Live commentator Chapman appeared to break down on air.

He said: "Good evening from Germany, we have a football match to bring you tonight and we will do, and we will start our build-up to it shortly.

'I wish none of this was real': A note on flowers left at the scene
'I wish none of this was real': A note on flowers left at the scene. Picture: Alamy

"But this has been a heartbreaking day. John Hunt is our colleague and our friend, not just to the current 5 Live Sport team, but all of those who've worked here with him over the past 20 years.

"And also to all of you who have enjoyed his superb commentaries. So on behalf of everybody connected to 5 Live Sport, our love and thoughts and support our with John and his family."

Sharing the clip of Chapman's emotional speech, former BBC Breakfast presenter Dan Walker wrote on X: "The football was amazing last night and we are so blessed to have brilliant commentators in the UK.

Forensics investigators at the family's home yesterday
Forensics investigators at the family's home yesterday. Picture: Alamy

"John Hunt is one of the best and his world was ripped apart yesterday when his wife and daughters were murdered.

"Mark Chapman knows himself how brutal life can be at times. Give yourself a moment to listen to how he introduced the football after the news about his colleague and friend had just been reported in the bulletin before he started."

Chapman's wife Sara died in 2020 after being diagnosed with cancer.

A BBC note sent to 5 Live staff on Wednesday said: "The news today about John Hunt's family is utterly devastating.

"Our thoughts are with John and his family at this incredibly difficult time and we will provide him with all the support we can."

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