'Your heart just skips a beat'

04:03, May 25 2013
The scene following the attack just a few blocks from a military training barracks in southeast London.
The scene following the attack just a few blocks from a military training barracks in southeast London.
A man is dead after being reportedly attacked with a machete in the incident.
A man is dead after being reportedly attacked with a machete in the incident.
''You people will never be safe,'' a man with bloodied hands carrying a machete and knife told a nearby cameraman.
''You people will never be safe,'' a man with bloodied hands carrying a machete and knife told a nearby cameraman.
London Terror
Forensic police work at the scene where a man was hacked to death.
London Terror
A tent covers part of the gruesome killing scene in South London.
London Terror
Police carry equipment at the scene after the attack.
London Terror
A forensic police officer works at the scene.
London Terror
Footage showing two men with machetes and meat cleavers following the attack. Pictured left, mother of two Ingrid Loyau-Kennett confronts one of the men and tells him: "It is only you versus many and you are going to lose."
London Terror
A screen grab showing a crashed car and a line of blood related to the Woolwich incident.
London Terror
Police arrest the two men following the brutal killing.

The family of drummer Lee Rigby have paid tribute to their "hero" in a tearful, agonised press conference, saying "our hearts have been ripped apart from us".

Lee Rigby was hacked to death on a London street by two men in an apparent terrorist attack.

His stepfather Ian Rigby said he spent frantic hours trying to contact Lee after hearing news of the attack.

"Your heart skips a beat when you see something like that on TV, you know your son is in that area," he said.

But the family were shocked when, late at night, it was confirmed to them that Lee was dead.

He had, after all, survived a tour of duty to Helmand province in Afghanistan as a machinegunner for the Fusiliers, and come back alive.

"When in Afghanistan you come to terms with it, you know it's dangerous," Ian Rigby said. "You don't expect something like that on your doorstep."

He read out a message from Drummer Rigby's younger sisters, aged 11 and 8, who said "you didn't deserve this, we are just upset you left us so early".

His distraught wife Rebecca, mother of their two year-old son Jack, sobbed as she said she revealed that Drummer Rigby had been due to come up on the weekend "so we could continue our future together as a family".

Also at the press conference were Drummer Rigby's sister Sara McClure, his mother Lyn, his mother-in-law Susan Metcalfe, and family member Ray Dutton.

In other developments overnight, police said they had released without charge two women, aged 29 and 31, who had been arrested on Thursday on suspicion of conspiracy to murder in connection with the Woolwich attack.

A 29 year-old man also arrested on Thursday on suspicious of conspiracy to murder remained in custody.

The two men shot by police at the scene of the attack remained in hospital in a stable condition.

Police have now searched seven different homes as part of their investigation, and were still going through six of them overnight.

An inquest will soon begin into Drummer Rigby's death.

Also overnight new video footage has emerged showing the confrontation between the suspects and the police.

Shot from above the scene, it appears to show one of the attackers running towards a police car, dropping a shiny metal object - probably a knife. When he is just a few paces from the car two shots ring out and he falls to the ground.

Four more shots ring out.

A second man appears to point a weapon at the officers, and two more shots are fired. He also falls to the ground.

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Lee Rigby
SLAUGHTERED: Lee Rigby was 25 years old and a father.

Fairfax Media