Paying his respects.
A week after his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II surprised victims of the bombing at Ariana Grande‘s concert at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, Prince William paid tribute to the first responders who came to help following the deadly attack.
Kate Middleton‘s husband arrived in Manchester on Friday, kicking off his visit by stopping at the Greater Manchester Police headquarters. There, he heard the harrowing tale of one particular officer who aided injured victims all while looking for his own teenage daughter.
Off-duty cop Michael Buckley was at the Manchester Arena on May 22 when Salman Abedi detonated an explosive device. At first, Buckley’s gut instinct was to locate 15-year-old Stephanie, however after seeing the carnage from the explosion, the cop jumped into action.
Michael recounted the scene for People, as he shared:
“I wanted to know where she was and whether she was ok and then there were all these other people badly injured too.”
Yikes. Thankfully, Buckley found his daughter in a nearby hotel as they were reunited early the next day. He continued:
“She ran to me but I couldn’t hold her because I was covered in blood. I told her I have got other peoples’ blood all over me.”
What a traumatizing situation.
On the number of lives lost at the concert, Buckley noted:
“There was one lady who died three times and we got her back three times and then we lost her the fourth time. It was very difficult.”
Obviously, Michael wasn’t the only officer on the scene as Chris Jenkins, a police community support officer, rushed to the location. He was among some of the first to arrive as he lived mere minutes away. Wow.
The officers couldn’t be more grateful for the Duke Of Cambridge’s visit. According to Chris, Prince William wanted to make sure the authorities were getting some support for their own welfare. Jenkins relayed:
“He was showing his respect and gratitude for what we did.”
The 34-year-old even asked emergency dispatcher Lisa Canovan “about the support she was receiving too.” Princess Diana would be so proud of her son.
The father-of-two then met up with other first responders, as well as local residents, who provided care to the victims after the attack. Specifically, Prince Harry‘s brother met with representatives from St. John’s Ambulance, Northern Rail, and the British Red Cross.
William also stopped by the Manchester Cathedral, where he signed a book of condolence with a note praising the city’s “strength and togetherness.” We’re not crying, you are.
We’re so impressed with how supportive the royal family is being. Well done, all!
[Image via Getty Images.]