BRENDAN Cox’s wife Jo was brutally murdered on way to her Labour constituency, days before Britain went to the polls.
The widower has since spoken publicly about his battle with grief and vowed to fulfil Jo’s legacy of uniting, not dividing.
Who is Brendan Cox? What’s his background?
Brendan is the widower of murdered Labour MP Jo Cox who was murdered in her Batley and Spen constituency in West Yorkshire in June 2016.
He is the father to Ms Cox’s two children who were three and five when she was killed.
Brendan was an adviser on international development to Gordon Brown while he was prime minister.
The 41-year-old is a secular humanist – a philosophy that believes humans can be ethical and moral without religion or a god.
He has worked as a campaigner for many advocacy groups over the years including Save the Children.
He said in a 2011 interview that his biggest goal at the organisation was to increase the rate of child survival around the world.
Brendan and Jo met while he was working for Save the Children and she was working for Oxfam.
He was also the executive director of Crisis Action, which works with individuals and organisations to protect civilians from armed conflict.
Brendan has said he will fight the hatred that led to his wife’s death.
What has Brendan said about Jo’s murder?
Brendan Cox has spoken about the devastating impact Jo’s murder has had on their family.
After her death he released a statement saying: “She would have wanted two things above all else to happen now: one, that our precious children are bathed in love and two, that we all unite to fight against the hatred that killed her.”
He added: “Hate doesn’t have a creed, race or religion, it is poisonous.”
Brendan also spearheaded an initiative called The Great Christmas Get Together, to pay tribute to his late MP wife.
He told Radio 4 ahead of the event: “Given that Jo’s killing was designed to tear us apart, to bring communities apart, we wanted to show how united our country remains.”
“When Jo was killed a year ago it took the heart out of our family.
“The first emotion was shock, both numbing and shattering.
“That in time gave way to a grief that remains very fresh, very raw and continues to hit us in vicious waves when we least expect it. But our family has not been broken.”
In the political sphere Brendan has chosen to use conciliatory, rather than divisive rhetoric, and urged caution in the wake of Boris Johnson’s “inflammatory” Commons speech.
He said Boris’ words on September 25, 2019, made him feel a bit “sick”, but later added: “I’m sure on reflection, it’s something that he would probably wish he hadn’t said.
“I think it was sloppy language and the wrong thing to say, but I but I don’t think that he is an evil man.
He added that “we should remember our common humanity” and “all of us on all sides of the political debate should take a deep breath and step back from this descent into polarisation.”
Why did Brendan Cox resign from the Jo Cox Foundation?
In February 2018 Brendan Cox stood down from the board of the charity set up in memory of his late wife.
A woman in her 30s claimed he “touched her inappropriately” in Harvard in 2015.
According to news reports, the matter was later dropped, though it is unclear why, the New York Times reports.
Brendan has strongly denied the 2015 accusations but admitted “inappropriate” conduct while working for Save The Children.
The charity launched an investigation, but Cox resigned before it could be completed.
In a statement he apologised for his behaviour and said he was standing down to protect the foundation’s work.
He said: “While I do not accept the allegations in the 2015 complaint to the police in Cambridge, Massachusetts, I acknowledge and understand that during my time at Save the Children I made mistakes and behaved in a way that caused some women hurt and offence.”
Jo Cox’s sister Kim Leadbeater said the family would “support Brendan as he endeavours to do the right thing by admitting mistakes he may have made in the past”.
She added: “Brendan is a wonderful father and I have no doubt about the happiness he brought to Jo.”
Brendan and charity workers will encourage communities to come together in the wake of Jo’s death[/caption]
When did Jo Cox die and how was she killed?
The Labour MP for Batley and Spen was stabbed 15 times and shot three times by Nazi-obsessed loner Thomas Mair.
The killer struck in broad daylight on June 16 2016, a week before the EU referendum.
Mair was found guilty of her murder at the Old Bailey on November 23.
He was sentenced to a whole life tariff.