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"Beautiful" Vandana had world at her feet - loved ones pay tribute to former Pate's pupil

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: December 17, 2012

Former Pate's pupil Vandana Singh

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BEAUTIFUL student Vandana Singh has been remembered by her family in a moving memorial service at Pate's Grammar School.

The 21-year-old, of Arle Road, Cheltenham, was killed last month when she was hit by a car in Oxford.

Vandana had been studying law at Oxford University and had ambitions of becoming a top lawyer.

More than 200 people, including family, friends and former classmates, gathered for a memorial service at Pate's Grammar School, where she had been a pupil until 2009.

Speakers paid tribute to kind-hearted Dana, who they said was endowed with a unique "panache" and was "always the life and soul of the party".

Her sister Komal, 24, said the family would miss her every day.

She said: "It is such a tragedy that someone so kind-hearted, hard-working, and with so many aspirations was taken from her loved ones so young.

"It is not fair that life can change in a split second and I will never understand why this happened.

"However, what I do know is that, for the 21 years that Dana was here with us, she made the most of every day.

"She has left us with the most amazing memories which we can always cherish."

Vandana's other siblings, Hitesh, 26, and Ravi, 18, wrote their own moving tributes.

Attendees at the service, on Saturday afternoon, heard how Vandana secured straight As at GCSE and A-Level – going on to win a place at Oxford University's Exeter College.

Outside of the classroom she was a formidable sportswoman, representing Gloucestershire at squash at various age groups up to under 18.


And friends said her academic success did not stop her enjoying a busy social life.

Rhiannon Tompkins, a former school pal, said: "Dana was an incredibly happy girl.

"She was one of the funniest people I have ever met – her sharp wit and sarcasm often had us in stitches.

"I always looked up to her. She was so strong and beautiful and yet she always had time to help those who needed her."

Teachers at the school came to pay their respects and attendees wrote their own personal recollections in a special book of memories.

Chris Beal, her English teacher, said she was one of his finest ever pupils, who had the world at her feet.

"She is a girl to be celebrated," he said. "A girl who simply cannot be forgotten."

Vandana died on November 12. An inquest into her death has been opened.

Heartbroken parents Bhanu and Asha Singh said they could not begin to come to terms with their loss.

Speaking after the service, Mr Singh said: "Vandana was such a special girl.

"She was our daughter and she meant everything to us.

"It has helped to reduce some of our pain to hear how highly people thought of her."

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