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Murdered Jo Cox sister’s reveals how the MP came back to the UK when she started a family

Jo Cox’s sister has given an emotional insight into her suffering following the MP’s shocking murder in 2016, appearing on Loose Women today. 

Speaking ahead of her appearance on ITV Tonight’s Angry Britain Beyond Repair?, which airs tonight Kim Leadbeater, 43, from West Yorkshire described how she had lost her ‘best friend’.

Talking – almost three years to the day of her sister’s death -the health and fitness consultant admitted her life was changed forever when she got the phone call telling her Jo had been murdered, but said she refuses to let anger rule her life. 

MP Jo Cox – a mother of two children aged five and three at the time, was shot dead by far right terrorist Tommy Mair, 55, outside a West Yorkshire library, aged just 41, just days before the EU referendum in June 2016. 

Jo Cox’s sister Kim Leadbeater has given an emotional insight into her suffering following the MP’s shocking murder in 2016, appearing on Loose Women toda

MP Jo Cox - a mother of two children aged five and three at the time, was shot dead by far right terrorist Tommy Mair, 55, outside a West Yorkshire library, aged just 41, just days before the EU referendum in June 2016

MP Jo Cox – a mother of two children aged five and three at the time, was shot dead by far right terrorist Tommy Mair, 55, outside a West Yorkshire library, aged just 41, just days before the EU referendum in June 2016

Speaking to the panel about her loss today, she said of Jo: ‘We were very close, best friends. It’s three years since my life changed forever. I still haven’t processed that, I don’t think I ever will.’

Describing their upbringing, she said: ‘We were brought up to treat other people with respect, and that’s what Jo did and what I do.’

Addressing society’s unrest of today, she continued: ‘I’m really proud of this country and so was Jo. I don’t want to overdramatise but it seems we’ve got to the point where the toxicity, the nastiness is just [too much].’

She admitted: ‘It’s totally wrong to say I’m not angry. I’m very angry about what happened to us, but what good would come from me channeling that anger into being horrible to other people or into people I disagree with. 

‘I feel a sense of despair sometimes, but I’ve chosen to do something positive.’

Addressing her sister's killer directly, she says: 'I feel extremely angry, and I feel extremely helpless. But I'm not going to give into those emotions, because then you'll be taking even more from me than you already have done, and I'm not going to let that happen'

Addressing her sister’s killer directly, she says: ‘I feel extremely angry, and I feel extremely helpless. But I’m not going to give into those emotions, because then you’ll be taking even more from me than you already have done, and I’m not going to let that happen’

Revealing how she was brimming with pride over Jo's maiden speech in parliament, she explains how Jo was a 'shy' child - making it an even bigger achievement. Jo and Kim are seen together near Big Ben as children

Revealing how she was brimming with pride over Jo’s maiden speech in parliament, she explains how Jo was a ‘shy’ child – making it an even bigger achievement. Jo and Kim are seen together near Big Ben as children

Speaking about Jo’s children, who are now eight and six, Kim said: ‘That’s my most important job – Jo’s kids are doing extremely well.

‘They’re so full of life and energy and so positive. The difficult thing will be when they get to an age when they really understand what happened. But we will be there for them. They have a wonderful family.’

In a glimpse at her appearance on ITV Tonight this evening, Kim is seen delving into her sister’s death, remembering: ‘Jo was genuinely one of the nicest people you’ll meet, she didn’t have a bad bone in her body and I’ve yet to meet anybody who didn’t like her. 

‘When Jo started to have a family she came home and wanted to make a difference in her home town.

Speaking ahead of her appearance on ITV Tonight's Angry Britain Beyond Repair?, which airs tonight Kim Leadbeater, 43, from West Yorkshire described how she had lost her 'best friend'

Speaking ahead of her appearance on ITV Tonight’s Angry Britain Beyond Repair?, which airs tonight Kim Leadbeater, 43, from West Yorkshire described how she had lost her ‘best friend’

Revealing how she was brimming with pride over Jo’s maiden speech in parliament, she explains how Jo was a ‘shy’ child – making it an even bigger achievement.

She continues: ‘I saw Jo a week before she was killed, just before the EU referendum. She’d had a long day and was in her work clothes and asked me to borrow a hoodie before snuggling up on the sofa.’

After dropping her off to her home, Jo remembers how she said: ‘I’ll give you your hoodie’, before she replied: ‘Don’t worry about it give it to me next time’.

‘That last time that I saw her has become really special, and it was just classic Jo’. 

Remembering the moment she was told her sister had been attacked, Jo says: ‘I was taking my car for an MOT and had just arrived at the garage when I got the phone call. 

Jo Cox's sister Kim Leadbeater, seen, has given an emotional insight into her suffering following the MP's shocking murder in 2016, as she looks at whether Britain has become irreparably violent on ITV Tonight

Jo Cox’s sister Kim Leadbeater, seen, has given an emotional insight into her suffering following the MP’s shocking murder in 2016, as she looks at whether Britain has become irreparably violent on ITV Tonight

Talking almost three years to the day about the her sister's death, the health and fitness consultant admits her life was changed forever when she got the phone call telling her Jo had been murdered - but she refuses to let anger rule her life

Talking almost three years to the day about the her sister’s death, the health and fitness consultant admits her life was changed forever when she got the phone call telling her Jo had been murdered – but she refuses to let anger rule her life

Pictured left to right: Kim, Jo's dad Gordon and mum Jean, and Jo Cox seen before her tragic death

Pictured left to right: Kim, Jo’s dad Gordon and mum Jean, and Jo Cox seen before her tragic death

Jo's dad is seen in the garden with his wife and Kim, saying: 'It shows you never know what's around the corner'

Jo’s dad is seen in the garden with his wife and Kim, saying: ‘It shows you never know what’s around the corner’

‘I don’t remember much after that. From that day onward my life was changed forever in every possible way you can think of’.

Speaking about her murderer Mair, she adds: ‘We’re very lucky that that individual will never be out of prison. I feel extremely angry, and I feel extremely helpless.’ 

Speaking directly to her sister’s killer, she adds: ‘But I’m not going to give into those emotions, because then you’ll be taking even more from me than you already have done, and I’m not going to let that happen’.

Paying tribute to her parents, she adds: ‘Mum and dad have been amazing, the four of us were a really strong family unit and have pulled together to look after each other’. 

Jo’s dad is seen in the garden with his wife and Kim, saying: ‘It shows you never know what’s around the corner’.

Kim adds: ‘We hadn’t had any bad luck and it was just weird how you can go from that to the level of bad luck we had’. 

Visiting parliament Kim meets Huw Merriman, David Davies and Jess Phillips, who all admit they have been subjected to extreme harassment online

Visiting parliament Kim meets Huw Merriman, David Davies and Jess Phillips, who all admit they have been subjected to extreme harassment online

Kim now holds a meeting on Jo's birthday every year to raise money for the charities she was passionate about, but admits she feels violence has got worse. They are seen together before her death

Kim now holds a meeting on Jo’s birthday every year to raise money for the charities she was passionate about, but admits she feels violence has got worse. They are seen together before her death

Jo’s father adds: ‘It doesn’t get any easier and it never will’, and her mum adds: ‘It’s hard, there’s always someone missing’.

Kim now holds a meeting on Jo’s birthday every year to raise money for the charities she was passionate about, but admits she feels violence has got worse.

Visiting parliament she meets Huw Merriman, David Davies and Jess Phillips, who all admit they have been subjected to extreme harassment online.

They reveal they are receiving as many as a thousand messages a week, with David arguing that social media has a big role to play in making the abuse possible.

As they discover that 20,000 threatening messages were sent to MPs in May, Huw admits he didn’t his safety seriously until Jo’s murder – and suggests taking a more respectful approach towards each other in chamber.

Speaking to Rachel Riley later in the show, the Strictly star admits she received a barrage of anti-cemetic abuse on Twitter when she spoke out after seeing posters discriminating against Jews in her area.

‘It’s damaging and disturbing’, she admits, describing how she received messages with Nazi references. 

‘I don’t think this is going to be a short-lived thing. There’s proper damage being done to the fabric of society’, she adds. 

Speaking to Rachel Riley later in the show, the Strictly star admits she received a barrage of anti-cemetic abuse on Twitter when she spoke out after seeing posters discriminating against Jews in her area

Speaking to Rachel Riley later in the show, the Strictly star admits she received a barrage of anti-cemetic abuse on Twitter when she spoke out after seeing posters discriminating against Jews in her area

Speaking to the father of Allan Bryant, a teenager who went missing in 2013, his father Allan reveals his family have received hundreds of abusive messages online

Speaking to the father of Allan Bryant, a teenager who went missing in 2013, his father Allan reveals his family have received hundreds of abusive messages online

And Kim soon discovers the abuse isn’t confined to MPs and celebrities. 

Speaking to the father of Allan Bryant, a teenager who went missing in 2013, his father Allan reveals his family have received hundreds of abusive messages online.

Some are from people accusing them of murdering him, while others even pretend to have killed him, describing his supposed murder in horrific detail. 

‘What has gone wrong with our society, that people who have already suffered are expected to suffer again’, Kim asks with horror, as she discovers how everyone from football players to mothers of deceased babies and cancer sufferers have fallen victim to horrific abuse. 

The number of people charged with sending malicious messages has risen by 38 per cent, while death threats have increased by 70 per cent in just two years.

Keen to understand the thinking of those with far right leanings after her sister was murdered by one such extremist, Kim meets Ivan, a former member of the far right English Defence League.

Keen to understand the thinking of those with far right leanings after her sister was murdered by one such extremist, Kim meets Ivan, a former member of the far right English Defence League

Keen to understand the thinking of those with far right leanings after her sister was murdered by one such extremist, Kim meets Ivan, a former member of the far right English Defence League

He says: ‘I thought I was standing up for some of the problems I was seeing in the community.’

Partly blaming a lack of public funding, he says: ‘It wasn’t until I left the EDL I realised I needed to take responsibility for myself.’

Meeting with Muslims in his local area, he soon realised they had similar concerns to him and wanted to work together to solve them. 

After four years in the EDL he kept his tattoo, but shows off a new tattoo alongside it which reads: ‘We have more in common that that which divides us’, words first spoken by Jo Cox during her speech.

He says: ‘After I heard her words it relates to my story so that’s where they are now’, as Jo exclaims: ‘That’s really special’.

Admitting that things seem worse than ever he says: ‘We need to start from scratch and have a conversation. People need to be more understanding with each other.’ 

Jo concludes: ‘If all we do is shout at each other, things will never get better. But seeing everyone laugh together at our events makes me believe that Britain isn’t beyond repair and things can improve’.  

Angry Britain: Beyond Repair? airs Thursday 13 June, 7:30pm, ITV.

A forensics officer looks at a lady's shoe at the scene in Birstall, West Yorkshire, following the death of Labour MP Jo Cox, who died after being shot and stabbed in the street outside her constituency advice surgery in 2016

A forensics officer looks at a lady’s shoe at the scene in Birstall, West Yorkshire, following the death of Labour MP Jo Cox, who died after being shot and stabbed in the street outside her constituency advice surgery in 2016

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