'Saffie will be with us on her birthday as she is every second of every day'

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Today marks what would have been the 10th birthday of Saffie Rose Roussos, the youngest person killed in the Manchester Arena terror attack.

Born on July 4, Saffie was a sparkling and vibrant youngster who lived in Leyland, where her parents Andrew and Lisa ran The Plaice fish and chip shop and she was adored by many in the community.

Saffie Rose Roussos

Saffie Rose Roussos

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Saffie was just eight when she attended her first concert last May when she went to see Ariana Grande perform at the Manchester Arena with her mum Lisa and older sister Ashlee Bromwich who both suffered serious shrapnel injuries in the blast.

Today Saffie should have been celebrating her 10th birthday and it is a bittersweet time for her friends and family.

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However, Saffie’s parents want to use her birthday to focus on the happy times and are sharing one of their favourite photographs of their daughter in the community where she was known and loved.

Andrew Roussos, Saffie’s dad, said: “We as a family would like to mark Saffie’s birthday and share with everyone her beautiful little face.

“Saffie’s warm heart and infectious smile would attract attention and she loved nothing more then to talk to people and make people laugh.

“Friends, family, staff and customers at the fish and chip shop were kept on their toes with Saffie’s mischief and humour - there was never a dull moment.

“She was a vibrant and happy little girl who loved being around friends and family and she will be with us on her birthday as she is every second of every day.”

A plane with a birthday message to Saffie will fly over the Manchester Arena today and then on to her hometown of Leyland as a mark of respect to her.

Family friend Mike Swanson has revealed how the plane and banner has been funded by the family and friends of Eilidh MacLeod, 14, who was one of the 22 killed in the terrorist attack.

There will be around 15 family fun events taking place around Leyland, Croston and Euxton this weekend in honour of Saffie’s birthday.

Andrew, who moved away from Leyland with the rest of the family as it was too painful to stay there, has revealed how he wants to organise a huge benefit concert and create a charity for victims of terrorist attacks.

He spoke out how the family could not have coped without the generosity, support and love shown to them by the public.

The victims

Saffie Roussos was the youngest of the 22 people killed when suicide bomber Salman Abedi detonated his device at the Manchester Arena.

Among the other victims were Tarleton teenager Georgina Callander, 18, Ribble Valley mum-of-three Michelle Kiss and Blackpool school receptionist Jane Tweddle.

In the wake of Saffie’s death her parents have set up a charity foundation to help the families of other victims of terror attacks.

Saffie’s dad Andrew Roussos is also trying to organise a concert at Lancashire cricket Club in August, to raise funds for the foundation.