Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Meredith Kercher: the woman the world forgot

meredith.jpg
meredith2.jpg

Amid the media storm surrounding Amanda Knox, relatives of murder victim Meredith Kercher have poignantly noted how the woman they loved has often been “forgotten”.

Just hours before Knox’s conviction was overturned, Meredith’s sister Stephanie, 29, soberly addressed a press conference in Perugia urging everyone “to remember the brutality of what happened and everything Meredith went through, the fear and the terror and not knowing why.”

The London-born, Leeds university student was just 21 when she was murdered in her own bed. Those closest to her remember a bubbly girl who didn’t take herself too seriously. Back at the family home in Coulsdon, Surrey, Meredith was a model daughter, devoted to her parents – John, a freelance journalist and his Indian-born wife Arline. She grew up enjoying ballet, gymnastics and karate lessons. ‘Mez’, as she was known to friends, talked of a future career as a journalist. In Perugia, she quickly made a group of British girlfriends, joining them for movie nights and dinner parties.

During one of the last phone calls Meredith made on the day she died, she told her mother that despite feeling tired from a party the previous night she planned to go home and write an essay. The exact events surrounding her murder have never been established, but the Italian court heard that Meredith’s wounds suggest that it would have been an agonising and slow death.

The Kercher family was “pleased” with the original guilty verdicts for Amanda Knox, then 20, Rudy Guede, then 20 and Raffaele Sollecito, then 23. Amanda’s father Curt Knox revealed they had not contacted the Kerchers to express “our sorrow for the loss of their daughter.”

In stark contrast to the Knox family, the Kerchers have turned down most interview requests. The family has also faced financial struggles. John, 68, was forced to retire after suffering two strokes in the past year and was unable to join the rest of family at the final day of last week’s court hearing – the only day they could afford to attend. The Kercher family has said last week’s verdict has led them back to “square one”. Stephanie Kercher said, “Until the truth comes out, we can’t forgive anyone because no-one’s even admitted to it, knowing there was someone out there who was responsible.”

Back in Mitcham Road Crematorium, a temporary headstone marks Meredith’s grave. At her home, Stephanie still “borrows” her clothes or flips through the book Meredith was reading at the time she died. Her bedroom remains undisturbed, as if awaiting her return. Arline says, “It’s not a shrine but it’s a constant reminder. It’s as though she’s just gone out and will be back in a while. But she won’t.” Last week the family stated, “It may be a case of waiting another year [for the truth]. We have to leave it to the police and the courts.”

Picture credits: Rex Features

Related

Amanda-Knox-2.jpg

Will Amanda Knox ever have the life she dreamed of?

rexfeatures_1461260x.jpg

Video: Amanda Knox arrives home

hero.jpg

Amanda Knox cleared

Comments

More

Danielle Brooks has something important to say about her stretch marks

The Orange is the New Black star has dubbed them the "road map of my strength"

by Jasmine Andersson
21 Apr 2017

Davina McCall on how she beat her heroin addiction: ‘I lost everyone’

The TV presenter has spoken candidly about her struggles with drug abuse

by Kayleigh Dray
21 Apr 2017

Tess Holliday slams Uber over "fat-shaming" driver

The body-positive model is boycotting the cab service for a driver's inappropriate questions about her health.

by Hayley Spencer
20 Apr 2017

Why Chelsea Clinton wants to talk about periods and breastfeeding

The former First Daughter has made it her mission to eradicate taboos

by Elle Griffiths
20 Apr 2017

Anne Hathaway didn’t trust One Day director because she was a woman

“I’m so scared that I treated her with internalized misogyny.”

by Moya Crockett
20 Apr 2017

Serena Williams was pregnant when she won the Australian Open

And she didn’t drop a single set

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Apr 2017

Katy Perry on how going into therapy changed her life for the better

“When I am in the room I am just Katheryn Hudson, which is amazing.”

by Moya Crockett
19 Apr 2017

Jessica Chastain reveals how she gets paid as much as male co-stars

The A-lister has learned to play hard ball when it comes to Hollywood sexism

by Elle Griffiths
19 Apr 2017

Star Wars writer shares story of being sexually harassed on train

“I’m telling this story to remind you that this is what women face every. Goddamn. Day.”

by Moya Crockett
19 Apr 2017

Amanda Seyfried chats to Stylist about mental health and farm life

“It feels good to speak my mind”

by Helen Bownass
18 Apr 2017