Family rebuild lives with Faith

A special birthday will be celebrated today as a family rebuild their lives. The daughter of murdered Lowestoft woman Sarah Spurgeon will enjoy her second birthday party, wearing her new fairy dress as she blows out the special candles her mum had brought for her just weeks before her death.

A special birthday will be celebrated today as a family rebuild their lives.

The daughter of murdered Lowestoft woman Sarah Spurgeon will enjoy her second birthday party, wearing her new fairy dress as she blows out the special candles her mum had brought for her just weeks before her death.

Earlier this week, Ainsley Rush, 25, of Saxon Road, Pakefield, was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing Miss Spurgeon, his ex-girlfriend. He admitted stabbing Miss Spurgeon to death in a frenzied knife attack, while 16-month old Faith slept in a cot upstairs.

Ipswich Crown Court heard that the couple's relationship broke down in January, and on March 18 Rush went to Miss Spurgeon's home and flew into a jealous rage after finding a picture of her new boyfriend on her mobile phone. He stabbed the 20-year-old 15 times in the neck and chest.

This week the heartbroken Spurgeon family said the nine months had been a nightmare. They said no sentence would be enough to replace Sarah - the daughter of Sheila and Jeff, sister of Dawn, Julie and Steven and mum to Faith.

Sarah's sister Dawn Kissane said: "You can't put into words just how we feel; the hatred and pain. He's taken so much as Sarah was far more than a mum, sister and daughter."

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Her sister Julie said: "It's affected so many people's lives. It isn't just that my sister has been killed as it wasn't an accident. It was premeditated - he told people he was going to do that."

Miss Spurgeon's mother, Sheila, had never spent more than a day apart from her daughter until the fateful weekend when she was killed.

"Some days I just go into the back garden and talk to her, as she is not far away," she said.

"He's a coward - he couldn't take his own life which he'd threatened. He killed Sarah, knew that Faith was in bed upstairs and he just left her - he is evil."

The family have become even closer since the tragedy, united around looking after Faith and continuing Miss Spurgeon's memory. After Christmas, they will face the unenviable task of going into the lounge of Sarah's house in Northfield Close, Oulton, for the first time since she was brutally murdered.

And in the New Year, after winning a custody battle for guardianship of Faith, Sheila and Jeff are going to try and adopt Faith and have her name changed to Spurgeon.

Mrs Spurgeon said: "I don't want her to be called anything else apart from Spurgeon. As long as everything goes well and we can adopt her, she will still be our granddaughter.

"Sarah had said to me, 'Faith's going to be my best mate, just like you and me, mum'. Faith is just so much like her mum - Sarah would be so proud of her."