A brave student who survived the Manchester Arena attack has tragically died after complications with diabetes at her halls of residence John Moore’s University.
It also emerged that her grandmother also ‘died of shock’ less than an hour after he 18-year-old had passed away from complications with diabetes.
Zara Ahmed was at the Ariana Grande concert with friends in May when bomber Salman Ramadan Abedi blew himself up, killing 23 people and injuring hundreds.
She was studying forensic science at John Moore’s university, Liverpool.
A newspaper tribute from the family said: “Losing a child is a parent’s worst nightmare and no amount of words can capture the loss and grief that Zara’s parents, Asefa and Kaleem are feeling at this moment.”
“Zara was their first born child and from the moment she was born their mission was to make her the happiest and most loved child on earth.”
“Of course the journey was never going to be easy.”
“At the age of 11 months, Zara was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and so began a daily routine of insulin injections and careful management of a strictly controlled diet.”
“Denied treats that most children take for granted, it was little wonder that Zara developed a love affair with food and boy, did that girl love food.”
The statement added: “Zara worked hard but she also played hard – she was a true live wire and embraced life 100%.”
“She enjoyed following her favourite football team, Aston Villa and spending quality time with her family and friends.”
‘Courageous, kind, bubbly, loving’
“Zara was loved universally, the numerous tributes left on her Facebook page capture far more clearly than anything else, her shining personality.”
“Courageous, kind, considerate, bubbly, loving, goofy are just some of the words used to describe her.”
“She was the first to hold her hand out to someone who needed it and her bad jokes and random chit-chat became her signature.”
“Zara’s love of her friends was only surpassed by the love she held for her family.”
“Aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents all held a special place in her heart.”
She was also extremely close to her brother, Zak, who is also diabetic.
The tribute added: “Zara and (her mum) Asefa were more like sisters than mother and daughter and shared a closeness that was envied by many.”
“It would be fair to say that Zara loved to shop and had her own unique style, something which Asefa indulged her in.”
“She had a wonderful, mischievous sense of humour and a giggle that was infectious.”
“She was always smiling and nothing made her happier than sitting back and singing along with her favourite singer, Ariana Grande.”
“In May 2017 Zara was attending the Ariana Grande concert at Manchester arena when it was attacked by a suicide bomber.”
‘An evening of fun with friends turned to tragedy’
“An evening of fun with friends had turned into a tragedy and Zara was deeply affected by that event.”
“During a time of distress and fear Zara held onto her faith and never hid it from others.”
“She refused to allow anyone to use her religion as a reason to hurt others and her prayers were said for all those affected, regardless of faith, colour, race or religion.”
“Her faith remained unshakeable epitomised on her Facebook page in her own immutable style: “I’m taken…by Allah innit!”
“There is no doubt that Zara’s passing has left a void in the hearts of her family and friends that can never be filled.”
“We will all miss the bright, sassy, bubbly, goofy girl that was as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside but we will hold on to the memories.”
“Asefa, Kaleem and brother Zak wish to thank the hundreds of people who turned out for her funeral and for the many messages of sympathy and support.”
“They ask that she is remembered in death as she was in life – with a smile.”
A Liverpool John Moores University spokesperson said: “Zara was only at the university for a short time, but had already made a positive impression with her enthusiasm and excitement for her studies.”
“All of her programme team and fellow students are deeply saddened by this tragic loss and our thoughts are with Zara’s family.”