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Campaigner Richard Taylor, father of murdered schoolboy Damilola, dies

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Campaigner Richard Taylor, father of murdered schoolboy Damilola, dies

Campaigner Richard Taylor, whose son Damilola Taylor was murdered at the age of just 10, has died, his family have announced.

The former Nigerian civil servant dedicated years to improving the lives of disadvantaged children in the wake of his son’s tragic death in November 2000, and set up the Damilola Taylor Trust to campaign against knife crime

Mr Taylor died on Saturday aged 75 following a long illness.

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.”

Mr Taylor always said he wanted his son 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 left bleeding to death in a stairwell in Peckham, south-east London, after he was attacked and slashed with a broken bottle on his way home from a library.

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

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.

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.

Published: by Radio NewsHub

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