Labour MP Rachel Reeves has paid an emotional tribute to her friend and colleague Jo Cox, telling the House of Commons how Batley and Spen will elect a new MP but "no one can replace a mother".
Reeves fought away tears as she movingly recounted how the friend she first met 20 years' ago resisted "hatred, intolerance and injustice".
As Parliament was recalled to pay tribute to the Batley and Spen MP shot and stabbed last week, she recalled how she met a woman in the town's coffeeshop who "made her want to be a bit more like her. A better person, a better mother, a better daughter, a better wife".
Batley and Spen will go on to elect a new MP but no one can replace a mother Rachel Reeves
Reeves went on:
“She died doing the job that she loved, representing the people she loved, in the place that she loved. Her mum and dad said to me that Jo wouldn't have changed a thing, she lived the life that she wanted to live and yet in her mum’s words, she had so much more that she could have done.ADVERTISEMENT
“Jo was struck down much too soon so it now falls on all of our shoulders - the women I met in that coffee shop in Batley, friends, MPs, al of us - to carry on Jo’s work. To combat and guard against hatred, intolerance and injustice. To serve others with dignity and with love and that is the best way we can remember Jo and all she stood for.
“But last, Batley and Spen will go on to elect a new MP but no one can replace a mother.”
Parliament was recalled specifically today so MPs could speak about their memories of the 41-year-old. All wore the white rose of Mrs Cox's native Yorkshire, and a red and white rose was placed in her seat.