Hundreds of people gathered in the streets of Southend on Monday to bid farewell to Catholic MP Sir David Amess ahead of a service at Westminster Cathedral on Tuesday.
His coffin was draped in a UK flag and carried in a horse-drawn hearse in a procession around Southend following a church service at St Mary's Church in Prittlewell.
The father-of-five was stabbed to death on October 15th while holding a meeting with constituents at Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh-on-Sea.
During the church service, led by Rev Paul Mackay and Monsignor Kevin William Hale, Sir David's family said their hearts are “shattered”.
“As a family, we are still trying to understand why this awful thing has occurred. Nobody should die in that way. Nobody. Please let some good come from this tragedy”.
The funeral service was by invitation only and was attended by close friends and family. Friend and colleague, Mark Francois, delivered the eulogy saying Sir David was “the living embodiment” of Parliament’s strengths.
He also said that despite Sir David’s “awful tragedy” the country should “keep calm and carry on” as that is “what he would have wanted us to do”.
Before the funeral service, Prime Minister Boris Johnson told BBC Essex that several members of his cabinet broke down in tears when they learned of Sir David’s death.
“Everybody was absolutely devastated," he said.
"We were all sitting around. I then got called out and got given the news. I had to go back in to tell cabinet colleagues, many of whom had known David for decades, and I'm afraid several colleagues broke down in tears because it was just an appalling piece of news.”
Leader of Roman Catholics in England and Wales, Cardinal Vincent Nichols will lead a requiem Mass at Westminster on Tuesday where a message from the Pope will also be shared.