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Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Support charity set up in memory of London Bridge terror victim

Written by Ryan Hooper

The grief-stricken parents of London Bridge terror attack victim Sara Zelenak have launched a charity to help others overcome the loss of a loved one in similarly traumatic circumstances.

Ms Zelenak, 21, was among the eight people killed when a white van ploughed into crowds at the landmark before three killers carried out a frenzied knife attack in Borough Market in June last year.

Her parents Mark and Julie Wallace have since sought to channel their heartache by establishing Sarz Sanctuary, named in memory of their Australian au pair daughter, as a way of "honouring Sara's life and keeping her spirit alive".

Her mother said: "Losing Sara (pictured) when she was only 21 crushed my spirit, spiralled me into turmoil, and devastated my family.

"It's every parent's worst nightmare to lose their child - the shock and grief is unimaginable.

"As parents, we're not sure we will ever come to terms with losing Sara, but we're determined to give purpose to her loss by establishing the Sarz Sanctuary charity."

Mr Wallace added: "The charity's mission is also a true reflection of the kind of love Sara taught everyone around her when she was with us - unconditional, unchanging, without barriers, forgiving, nurturing and supportive, a love that can lift others from defeat."

The parents hope to establish free holistic grief healing centres in both the UK and Australia, offering people in mental turmoil the chance to attend seven-day funded programmes with access to a range of specialist treatments such as therapy.

James Galvin, a former Metropolitan Police officer and UK trustee for Sarz Sanctuary in the UK, said: "Having first-hand experience of the impact terror incidents have on victims, their families and the emergency services, the establishment of Sarz Sanctuary by Mark and Julie is a force for good that will give those touched by traumatic grief newfound hope."

Killers Rachid Redouane, Youssef Zaghba and ringleader Khuram Butt were shot dead by armed police eight minutes after the first emergency call on the evening of the attack on June 3 2017.

- To donate to Sarz Sanctuary, visit https://chapel-yorkukfoundation.org/donate-to-sarz-sanctuary/

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2018, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) Metropolitan Police / PA Wire.

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