Last updateTue, 17 Mar 2015 2pm

Family pay moving tribute to Jacintha Saldanha at Memorial Service

Family, friends and scores of supporters have attended a memorial service at Westminster Cathedral to the nurse found hanged days after taking a prank call about the Duchess of Cambridge.

In a joint tribute by her husband Benedict Barboza and children Junal and Lisha, Jacintha Saldanha was described as "generous", "kind-hearted" and the "core of the family".  

Mrs Saldanha, 46, was found hanged in her apartment near the King Edward VII hospital in Central London on Friday 07th December, three days after she had passed on the hoax call from an Australian radio station.

Speaking outside the cathedral, flanked by supporters including MP Keith Vaz, Mr Barboza said his wife was the "light of my darkness".  

"You showed me the way forward, standing by me during times of hardship and happiness", he said.

"She had a sparkling personality and the house is an empty place without her.  Our 19 years of togetherness will be cherished forever.  I love you and miss you", he added.

Mr Barboza thanked everybody who had offered support and comfort, including Prime Minister David Cameron, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and MPs Keith Vaz and Charlotte Leslie.

Daughter Lisha, 14, said: "We are shattered.  You have left an unfillable void.  Please watch over us."

Memorial services have already been held at the hospital and in Bristol where her husband and children live.

Mrs Saldanha's funeral will take place in Karnataka, India, on Monday.

She had answered a call on 4 December from two Australian DJs pretending to be the Queen and the Prince of Wales wanting to speak to the pregnant duchess who was being treated for acute morning sickness.

An inquest in Westminster this week revealed that Mrs Saldanha, 46, had left three notes prior to her suicide; one to her family explaining what happened at the hospital, one detailing her funeral arrangements and a third criticizing her colleagues' treatment of her in the wake of the hoax call.

The hospital however, has said that managers reassured Mrs Saldanha "on a number of occasions" that no blame was attached to her.



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