Keith Palmer's family release first statement since policeman's murder in London attack: 'We love him so much'

Jon Sharman
PC Keith Palmer: Metropolitan Police

The family of the police officer murdered in Wednesday's Westminster terror attack have paid tribute to "a wonderful dad and husband" as the Metropolitan Police said it would not re-issue his shoulder number.

Keith Palmer, 48, was one of four people killed after attacker Khalid Masood ploughed a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge and attempted to enter the Houses of Parliament before he was shot dead.

Members of the public have donated more than £100,000 after the Metropolitan Police Federation launched a memorial fund to pay tribute to its fallen colleague, who it said was "simply doing his job" when he was stabbed to death.

In a statement, PC Palmer's family said: "Keith will be remembered as a wonderful dad and husband. A loving son, brother and uncle. A long-time supporter of Charlton FC.

"Dedicated to his job and proud to be a police officer, brave and courageous. A friend to everyone who knew him. He will be deeply missed. We love him so much.

"His friends and family are shocked and devastated by his loss."

PC Palmer, who was father to a five-year-old daughter, had joined the parliamentary and diplomatic protection command less than a year ago.

The Met said it would retire his shoulder identification number. It tweeted: "As a mark of respect Keith's shoulder number—4157U—will be retired and not reissued to any other officer."

And Charlton FC said it was planning a tribute to "true hero" PC Palmer, a season ticket holder, at its next home game on 4 April. Until then, it has placed a team scarf over his seat.

Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons Lindsay Hoyle said Westminster had lost "one of our village policemen". He said: "Our thoughts go to his family and to the other victims of this hideous crime.

"And it’s that—people doing their duty to try and make the House of Commons safe, and he has lost his life serving us. That is a tragedy that should never have happened."