THE family of a 16-year-old girl stabbed to death on a bus say they have been “overwhelmed” by the support of well-wishers.
Christina Edkins was killed by a stab wound to the chest as she was on a bus making her way to school on Thursday March 7.
The teenager's silver coffin was taken to the St Phillips Cathedral, Birmingham in a white carriage, pulled by a pair of white horses.
Christina’s parents Jason and Kathleen led her family into the 300-year-old building which was packed with those wanting to pay their respects.
Despite the icy chill about 300 mourners stood outside to pay their respects, while inside the service was attended by 600 family and friends.
Among them were 120 pupils from Leasowes High School, which Christina attended in Halesowen, and colleagues from the Tesco supermarket where she worked part-time.
There were tearful tributes to Christina including from her school principal Neil Shaw who called her “an inspiration”.
He said Christina was “charming, fun-loving, hard-working and caring'' and always aspired to be a nurse.
“If schools could choose their students, they would be full of pupils like Christina.”
Mr Shaw said Christina was “a great friend to many” and showed her nurturing side working with youngsters in a nursery, during an internship.
He also paid tribute to the “strength” and resilience her friends had shown in dealing with her death, breaking the “popular myth” that all young people nowadays could not measure up to those in years past.
“I can tell you first-hand that they have shown strength and compassion in coming to terms with the death of their wonderful Christina.”
Keith Rammell, Christina's godfather, also paid emotional tribute and said his only wish was to have seen her grow up into “that most wonderful, caring young lady''.
Instead he said her death left “an empty space” in the hearts of those who loved her, adding she would “never be replaced”.
To his goddaughter, “our Christina”, he said: “Sleep tight.”