Families, friends tell of their shock and devastation
Tributes have poured for the 10 Brits killed on the doomed Malaysia Airlines flight gunned down over Ukraine.
Officials named the British victims as diplomatic pressure grew on Russian leader Vladimir Putin over the tragedy.
The family and friends of the dead 10 spoke of their shock and grief yesterday.
Newcastle United fans John Alder, 63, and Liam Sweeney, 28, were among the 298 victims. The pair were on their way to see the club’s pre-season tour of New Zealand.
John’s family said: “We’d like to thank everyone for their thoughts and incredibly generous gestures, particularly those who have been able to share personal memories of John.
“We are moved by your kind words, acts and the knowledge that so many people saw John for who he was: a kind, courteous man who was much loved as a son, brother, uncle and fan.
“Our thoughts are with Liam’s family and the families of the other passengers.”
Newcastle managing director Lee Charnley said: “Both were dedicated supporters and known to thousands of fans and staff alike.”
Fans of fierce local rivals Sunderland came together to raise funds for a floral tribute for the two with them raising £7,000 in just 14 hours.
Other doomed passengers included former BBC man Glenn Thomas. The 49-year-old from Blackpool was on his way to the International Aids Society summit in Melbourne, Australia.
Drilling technician Stephen Anderson, 44, who lived in Malaysia, was the only Scot among the victims. The former RAF search and rescue co-ordinator moved to Malaysia four years ago with his second wife Joanna, 37.
Last night his parents, Leslie and Rosalind, who live in Daviot near Inverness, were too upset to talk. But a friend who did not want to be named said: “I was out in Malaysia last year to visit him and his wife and he was very happy. Although he lived in Penang, he worked off-shore around the African continent. Schiphol was his hub and he would fly into there to catch his flight back home. I have been trying to contact Joanna but with no success.”
Posting on Twitter, Anna H wrote: “Thoughts and prayers to a beautiful friend of ours whose husband was on flight #MH17. A top guy who will be truly missed by all your RAF family.”
Brad Wight also posted: “Just found out a former colleague and mate died in the Malaysian airlines incident. RIP Steve Anderson.”
The former headteacher of victim Richard Mayne, from Leicestershire, paid tribute to the 20-year-old.
John Wood, from the Dixie Grammar School in Nuneaton, said: “Richard was an extremely pleasant and thoughtful young man who gave his time generously for everyone.”
His sister Scarlett posted a picture of her and Richard on Instagram with the caption: “Always been my hero. Forever loved, never forgotten.”
Helicopter rescue pilot and father-of-two Cameron Dalziel, 43, who held dual nationality with Britain and South Africa, also died in the attack.
In a TV interview his brother Campbell said: “He always believed in helping and encouraging people from being a lifeguard on the beach to flying helicopters.”
The family of Loughborough University student Ben Pocock, who was on his way to Australia to begin a professional placement, spoke of their “devastation” .
“He was a warm, caring, fun-loving son and brother who had an extremely bright future ahead of him,” they said in a statement.
Brit lawyer John Allen was with his Dutch wife Sandra and their sons Christopher, Julian and Ian.
He was described as a “much-loved colleague” by his friends at international law firm NautaDutilh.
The family of Robert Ayley, 28, originally from Guildford but living in New Zealand, said the father-of-two “touched many lives”.
On Facebook his wife Sharlene wrote: “Rob was our everything.”
Andrew Hoare was named as the final British victim.
There were also 193 victims from the Netherlands, 43 from Malaysia, including 15 crew and two children and another 27 from Australia.
The dead also include 12 from Indonesia four people from Germany, four from Belgium, three from the Philippines plus a Canadian and a New Zealander.