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Minute’s applause to remember midwife

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Posted on : August 13, 2018

Image copyright Samantha Eastwood
Image caption Samantha Eastwood’s family has thanked members of the public for their support

A minute’s applause has been held in memory of midwife Samantha Eastwood who was found dead.

Her body was found in a shallow grave in Staffordshire, on 4 August, eight days after she was reported missing.

Stoke City fans clapped during the 28th minute of the Championship game, the number marking her age, and came after candle-lit vigils were held.

Michael Stirling, 32, of Gratton Road, Bucknall, has been charged with her murder.

Potters supporters also cheered to pay tribute to Ms Eastwood during the club’s game against Brentford.

Forward Benik Afobe opened the scoring for the home team as the minute’s applause ended.

Image copyright Tracey Harrison/Twitter
Image caption Candlelit tributes outside Royal Stoke University Hospital

The tribute followed candle-lit vigils that had taken place across Stoke-on-Trent on Friday night for Ms Eastwood, whose body was found in Caverswall.

In a post with a snap of a candlelit vigil, Tracey Harrison wrote: “Sam’s night shift colleagues kept the light shining bright throughout the night. We miss her warmth, humour and friendship so very much.. RIP Sam.”

A rose bush was also delivered by a maternity unit 100 miles away in a mark of solidarity.

Barnsley Hospital, in South Yorkshire, made the donation to Royal Stoke University Hospital, where Ms Eastwood worked.

Barnsley Hospital tweeted: “From the team at Barnsley Hospital’s maternity unit to all the team at Stoke. One of our midwives will drop off a rose bush to remember Samantha and some tea and Yorkshire food hampers to help you comfort each other.

“You’re in our thoughts at this difficult time.”

Ms Eastwood’s family have already thanked people for their support following her death, promising “her memory and legacy will live on”.

Image caption Tributes to the midwife have been left outside Royal Stoke University Hospital

Ms Eastwood was last seen in uniform leaving work at Royal Stoke University Hospital on 27 July.

Staffordshire Police said her post-mortem examination had taken place, but further tests were required.

Mr Stirling is accused of Ms Eastwood’s murder and appeared via videolink at Stafford Crown Court on Wednesday.

The next hearing was scheduled at Northampton Crown Court in October.

Two men, aged 60 and 28, arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender, have been released on conditional bail.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Michael Stirling had appeared at North Staffordshire Justice Centre at an earlier hearing

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