The bombing happened around 10:30 p.m. local time after Ariana Grande had left the stage and people were beginning to leave. The concert was sold out and about 20,000 people were in attendance, including many teenagers and young people. The explosion occurred in a public area, just outside the arena. According to the Irish Times, Manchester’s top police official said it’s believed that the attacker was “carrying an improvised explosive device, which he detonated, causing this atrocity” and acted alone.
As the names of those who died are released, a heartbreaking picture of that night emerges, when these young victims were just wanting to have a nice time listening to music they loved.
Georgina Callandar: A Super Fan
Georgina Callandar, 18, was the first victim identified. She was a teenage “super fan” of the singer and posted a photo with her on Instagram in 2015, excited to have met Ariana Grande. Before the concert, she tweeted to Grande: “SO EXCITED TO SEE YOU TOMORROW,” she wrote. Georgina was on her second year of studying health and social care. She died in the hospital, with her mother at her side, The Standard reported. Friends said she was kind and loving, open, always ready to talk to everyone. One friend wrote about Georgina on Twitter: “”Rest in peace Gina. I love you so incredibly much, you deserved the world & more. I’m so lucky to have met you and known you.” After her death, actor Sean Maguire from Once Upon a Time tweeted about her death, saying he had just met her in April and “she was so young & sweet.” You can read more about Georgina here. (Georgina with Ariana Grande in 2015: Instagram)