British mother of two was fatally stabbed while she and her husband tried to fight off two burglars who broke into their home in Australia on Boxing Day, according to reports.
Emma Lovell, 41, originally from Ipswich, died after she and her husband Lee, 32, were knifed at their home in North Lakes, Queensland.
Police said a scuffle out on the front porch as the couple tried to stop the intruders.
Mrs Lovell stabbed in the chest and her husband in the back, according to Queensland Police reports.
Two 17-year-old men have both been charged with one count each of murder, attempted murder and entering a dwelling with intent in company.
Mr Lovell, who moved to Australia with his wife 11 years ago, has now been released from hospital.
Paying tribute to his wife Mr Lovell told Daily Mail Australia: “She died trying to protect me and our family. We’re all devastated by what has happened. I miss her so much.”
He said he and his wife were alerted to the presence of the two intruders via a home security system.
Mr Lovell added: “We heard our two dogs barking, Emma checked on our Swann security app and saw the front door was open.
“We both rushed out of our bedroom door, Emma behind me, and saw two people in our house.
‘I didn’t even know there was an issue until my daughter spotted her mum was bleeding.”
Christina Lofthouse, 41, who lives in Britain and was Mrs Lovell’s best friend for 33 years, today tribute describing her as “the best friend a girl could have”.
She said: “She was the first person I messaged in the morning and the last person I spoke to at night.
“I’m utterly heartbroken that my best friend is gone and I don’t get to speak to her again, hug her again, laugh with her and cry with her.
“Her poor daughters, husband, mum, brother and sister. As a family we are heartbroken to lose the best friend a girl could have. We had a friendship like no other.’
The suspects have been refused bail and are set to appear in Brisbane Childrens’ Court on Wednesday.
A GoFundMe page has been set up by the community in Queensland where the couple were much loved. The page has a target of 50,000 Austrlalian dollars (£28,000) and has already raised 32,000.
Lorna Golompick wrote on the page: “Lee Lovell and his gorgeous girls lost their beautiful wife, best friend and Mum last night under shocking circumstances. Emma was beautiful inside and out – she helped our family run smoothly with her fabulous ironing service and she always had time for a pet and a play with our golden retriever – as did Lee when they delivered as a team every Sunday. Our family is heartbroken for them so we are sharing this page to increase the support Lee can receive for the days ahead with his girls. We send them love and prayers to hold them minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day.”
Naomi Sprudzans, who set up the page wrote; “ The North Lakes Community are supporting the Lovell family during this difficult time. Although the financial support won’t bring Emma back, hopefully we can provide the family with some time to mourn the loss of a wife and mother. Emma Lovell, has tragically passed away at the age of 41.
Emma leaves behind her husband Lee and two daughters, who are now faced with the unimaginable loss of their beloved wife and mother.In this difficult time, as a community lets help support Lee and the girls as they navigate through this heartbreaking tragedy.
“Any donations, no matter how small, will be greatly appreciated and will go towards helping the family with expenses during this difficult time.Please keep the Lovell family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”