SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — The life of a Utah man who ran a recording studio at his home before he was killed in a high-profile London attack that also injured his wife was celebrated Saturday with the local music he loved.
Among the attendees was Keith Malda, a police officer in London who was one of the first responders to the scene at London’s Westminster Bridge. He saw Melissa Cochran bloody and silent on the bridge on March 22 and helped treat her before ambulances arrived.
The two stayed in touch, and Malda said he traveled to Utah after being inspired by her focus on love over hate after the attack. “I had to come,” he said.
Melissa Cochran said Malda stayed with her and told her everything was going to be OK. “I owe my life to him,” she said.
Melissa Cochran, 46, said she was looking at her camera and didn’t see the sport utility vehicle coming before it plowed into a crowd of pedestrians. She and her husband had been grabbing each other’s hands just before the attack, kissing and saying how much fun they were having with each other.
Kurt Cochran was thrown from London’s Westminster Bridge when he and his wife were struck by a sport utility vehicle that plowed into a group of pedestrians. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack that killed four people and injured scores more.
Cochran says she’s sometimes angry at the attacker who killed her husband, but she doesn’t hate him.
“I can’t hate anyone. Kurt wouldn’t want me to, and I just don’t have it in my heart to do that,” she said.
The concert was held in lieu of a traditional funeral for Kurt W. Cochran, 54, his brother-in-law Clint Payne said. It was an easy decision on how to honor the man who also helped with music festivals and high school productions, he said. “He’s done so much for the music scene,” Payne said.
Cochran’s wife, Melissa, suffered a broken leg in the March 22 attack and arrived at the concert using crutches. She also suffered a broken rib and cuts and bruises.
Members of Cochran’s family, including his son, are among the musicians who played at the show in a park in Bountiful, north of Salt Lake City, Payne said. The acts had worked with the Cochrans at their basement recording studio.
The West Bountiful couple was on the last day of a European trip celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary when the attack happened. The two were visiting Melissa Cochran’s parents, who were serving a church mission in London.
She and her husband were described as inseparable. They ran a recording studio in their basement, and Kurt Cochran helped young bands get started by charging them only a small fee to use it.
The London attack came exactly one year after four Mormon missionaries — three from Utah — were seriously injured in a bombing of Brussels airport.