UK & World News
Mum Of Stabbed Children Shares Family Photo
The mother of two children killed by their father released a family photograph of her "angels" as an inquest opened into their deaths.
Michael Pedersen, 51, was found dead beside his son Ben, seven, and daughter Freya, six, next to a Saab 900SE convertible in a lane at Newton Stacey, Hampshire, at the weekend.
Both children had been stabbed. Pedersen is then believed to have stabbed himself.
The children's mother, Erica Pedersen, released a photograph of herself with the two children along with the statement: "My angels are in heaven now."
Graham Short, coroner for central Hampshire, opened an inquest into the deaths and heard evidence confirming their identities.
The hearing was also told that post-mortem examinations confirmed all three died of stab wounds.
Pedersen was a former army sergeant in the Household Cavalry unit that was hit by an IRA nail bomb in Hyde Park in 1982.
Four soldiers and seven horses were killed in the explosion, which left Pedersen's horse, Sefton, seriously injured.
Sefton became a symbol of the struggle against the IRA and won the Horse of the Year, a prize Pedersen picked up on the animal's behalf.
Despite 34 separate wounds that required eight hours of surgery, the animal survived and became famous for battling against the odds.
Pedersen had been living in Chertsey, Surrey, and had taken his children to visit his father in Andover, but he failed to return the two youngsters to their mother by the pre-arranged time of 5pm.
He wrote on his Facebook profile in August that he had split from Mrs Pedersen, 43, with whom he ran a haulage business.
He wrote: "Worst day of my life. Sadly have split with Erica am absolutely distraught".
The children's maternal grandfather, William Clifford, 67, from Buckinghamshire, said the family was "extremely distressed" by the deaths.