Orphaned daughters pay tribute to parents killed in Manchester bombing

Orphaned daughters, 20 and 14, pay tribute to parents killed in Manchester bombing as they waited to pick them up from Ariana Grande concert

  • Marcin, 42, and Angelika Klis, 39, were killed during Manchester Arena attack
  • Had been waiting in the venue’s foyer to pick up their daughters in May 2017
  • The parents were caught in the explosion which killed 22 and injured 119 
  • Daughters Aleksandra and Patrycja Klis have paid tribute to their parents  

The orphaned daughters of a Polish couple who were killed in the Manchester Arena terror attack have paid tribute to their parents at the public inquiry into the attack.

Marcin, 42, and Angelika Klis, 39, had been waiting in the venue’s foyer to pick up their daughters following an Ariana Grande concert in May 2017 when they were caught in the explosion which killed 22 and injured 119.

In a statement to the inquiry, their daughters Aleksandra, then aged 20, and Patrycja, then 14, described how the pain following the death of their ‘amazing parents’ was ‘so hard to explain’. 

Details of the couple’s life and death were given during the commemorative phase of the public inquiry, where family members of each of the 22 murdered in the attack give tributes including statements, videos and photographs of their loved ones. 

Marcin, 42, and Angelika Klisn (pictured together moments before they were killed), 39, had been waiting in the foyer of the Manchester Arena when they were killed on May 2017

The hearing in Manchester was told the parents were born in Slowno, a small town in northern Poland and grew up in another town, Darlowo nearby.

They had married in Poland in 1996 and divorced ten years later but only remained apart for a short time and though they did not remarry, were very much still in love, the hearing was told.

The daughters’ statement read: ‘I don’t know an awful lot about their growing up and education. I’m not sure how my parents met but they met in the early 1990s and fell in love.’ 

‘We think of our parents all the time, they are never out of our thoughts,’ the sisters added.   

In 2004, their father Marcin, a postman in Poland, moved to the UK, working initially for Tesco and latterly as a taxi driver after all the family moved to York in 2007.

Meanwhile their mother Angelika, who had studied economics in Poland, initially worked as a cleaner then as a shop worker for Tesco until she was killed. 

They would go back to Poland once a year and also enjoyed family holidays in Rome and Egypt.

In their statement the daughters said: ‘Every few weeks they would plan a family day because spending time with us made them both happy. We enjoyed every minute of time we spend together.

‘Mum and dad’s love was incredibly strong, they were so in love as if teenagers without a care in the world.

‘Most of all they were happy. They were soulmates and did not want to be without each other.

‘Mum and dad were amazing parents and kind people.

‘Losing our mum and dad and the pain and loss we feel is so hard to explain.

Aleksandra Klis (pictured), from York, who was 20 at the time of her parents death, and her sister Patrycja, then 14, paid tribute to their parents at the public inquiry into the attack

Suicide bomber Salman Abedi (pictured entering a lift to the Manchester Arena) detonated his large Karrimor rucksack which contained the explosive on the day of the attack

‘We are completely devastated by what has happened and our lives have been completely turned upside down.’

The final picture of the couple taken on the evening of the bombing as they waited for the concert to finish was also shown during the inquiry.        

Following their parents death, the daughters received an outpouring of support, with Donna Kellaway, a neighbour of the family’s home in York, setting up a GoFundMe page for the girls.

On the page Ms Kellaway wrote: ‘Alex and Patrycia tragically lost both parents in the Manchester attacks. There are no words to describe what they must be going through.

‘I know money will do nothing to ease their pain, but I hope the community can raise something for these girls that will help them financially at this terrible time.’   

During the terror attack, suicide bomber Salman Abedi waited an hour in the City Room, the foyer outside the venue, before detonating his large Karrimor rucksack which contained the explosive at 10.31pm.

His body, which was recovered in four parts, was identified by his DNA and finger prints which were on the police database after he was arrested for shop lifting in 2012. 

The forensic investigators recovered 1,675 nyloc nuts, 156 flanged nuts, 663 plain nuts and 11 fragments from the deceased, survivors, and crime scene. 

It was previously revealed that the Arena bomber who had been studying for a degree in business and management at Salford University, had used his student loan to fund the terrorist attack with the help of his brother.

Pictured: Ambulances and police arriving to Manchester Arena following the explosion 

In 2019, Aleksandra Klis urged Britain not to let Isis bride Shamima Begum return, during an interview on ITV’s This Morning.  

She said: ‘I think she’s comparing two things that shouldn’t ever be compared. She’s saying that there are fighters in IS that are getting killed.

‘Those people go there knowing what to expect. People who went to the Manchester Arena, they went there to take their kids to a concert.

‘She’s out of order, comparing those two things… She’s made her bed. I think she should remain where she is. I don’t think she’s being honest.

‘The only reason that she wants to come back is because she couldn’t stay where she was. What is the point in coming back if you enjoy it so much there?’

The public inquiry into the circumstances of the attack is expected to last into spring next year.

The hearing continues.     

The 22 victims of the Manchester Arena bombing in May 2017 

  • Elaine McIver, 43: the off-duty police officer died in the attack, which injured her husband and children;
  • Saffie Rose Roussos, 8: the youngest victim was separated from her mother and sister in the seconds after the blast;
  • Sorrell Leczkowski, 14: schoolgirl died in the bomb blast, while her mother, Samantha and grandmother Pauline were badly hurt;
  • Eilidh MacLeod, 14: confirmed dead having been missing since being caught up in the blast with her friend Laura MacIntyre;
  • Nell Jones, 14: farmer’s daughter travelled to the pop concert with her best friend for her 14th birthday;
  • Olivia Campbell-Hardy, 15: her family searched desperately for her for nearly 48 hours and went on TV to plead for news;
  • Megan Hurley, 15: the Liverpool schoolgirl was with her brother who suffered serious injuries in the blast;
  • Georgina Callander, 18: met Ariana Grande backstage at a previous gig and died in hospital with her mother at her bedside;
  • Chloe Rutherford, 17, and Liam Curry, 19: couple from South Shields ‘wanted to be together forever and now they are’, their family said;
  • Courtney Boyle, 19, and Philip Tron, 32: criminology student and her stepfather were confirmed dead following a Facebook appeal;
  • John Atkinson, 26: pop fan from Radcliffe, Greater Manchester, was in a local dance group and was leaving the gig when the blast happened;
  • Martyn Hett, 29: public relations manager from Stockport, who was due to start a two-month ‘holiday of a lifetime’ to the US two days later;
  • Kelly Brewster, 32: civil servant from Sheffield who died trying to shield her 11-year-old niece from the bombing;
  • Marcin Klis, 42, and Angelika Klis, 39: both killed as they waited for their daughters who both survived the blast;
  • Michelle Kiss, 45: mother-of-three from Clitheroe, Lancashire, went to the Ariana Grande concert with her daughter;
  • Alison Lowe, 44, and friend Lisa Lees, 43: both killed when they arrived to pick up their teenage daughters who were not hurt;
  • Wendy Fawell, 50: mother from Leeds was killed by the blast while picking up her children at the Arena with a friend;
  • Jane Taylor, 50: mother-of-three from Blackpool was killed as she waited to collect a friend’s daughter from the concert

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