Editor’s comment: Never forget what happened to Jodie

PUBLISHED: 13:29 15 November 2019 | UPDATED: 13:29 15 November 2019

Jodie Chesney who was stabbed to death in Harold Hill. Photo: Met Police

Jodie Chesney who was stabbed to death in Harold Hill. Photo: Met Police

Met Police

Eight months ago the borough was rocked by the murder of Jodie Chesney, a 17-year-old stabbed in the back while she chatted with friends on a bench in a Harold Hill park.

Her death hit the community so hard because she was completely innocent.

Jodie, of Dagenham, was a student at Havering Sixth Form College. She was a keen classical pianist and photographer, and was a few weeks away from completing her Duke of Edinburgh gold award.

She was also an active Scout.

Chief Scout Bear Grylls said she was "one of our brightest and best".

He wrote: "She put everything into life and her dedication to her friends, her family, to Scouts and her community was incredible."

Purple bows - Jodie's favourite colour - sprang up around Havering and Barking and Dagenham, and even further afield. Some are still there.

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A week after her death, thousands of people marched through Romford Town Centre to protest against knife crime.

Demonstrators chanted "no more knives" as purple balloons and banners decorated their route through the borough.

Take a Knife Save a Life (TAKSAL) charity was launched with patrols on the streets looking to persuade youngsters to give up their blades.

Eight months on from that terrible night we must not allow ourselves to become complacent. We must continue the battle to stop people carrying knives. We must never forget what 
happened to Jodie and we need a shift in culture - that can be her legacy.

Friday (November 15) was BBC Children in Need, an annual day devoted to raising money for disadvantaged children across the UK. Since it started in 1980 it has raised more than £1billion.

And we want to know what you did to help raise money.

If you did anything in Havering, send us details, along with pictures.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Romford Recorder. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

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