Family pay heartbreaking tribute to 14-year-old Nathaniel Shani as his murderers are jailed

Nathaniel's family have cried out for an end to knife crime.

Daisy Jackson Daisy Jackson - 21st June 2024

The family of Nathaniel Shani, stabbed to death at just 14 years old, have shared a heartbreaking tribute to him as his killers were jailed.

Nathaniel was brutally murdered in September 2023, passing away in hospital after being stabbed in the neck in Tavistock Square in Harpurhey.

On Wednesday this week, his killers – a 15-year-old boy and a 14-year-old boy who both cannot be named for legal reasons – were sentenced to a total of 23 years in prison.

Nathaniel’s family have again cried out for an end to knife crime, urging other parents to take responsibility for ensuring their children aren’t carrying knives.

They have described the 14-year-old air cadet as a ‘courageous young boy’ who had a ‘great sense of humour’.


The tribute shared through GMP added that he was ‘never angry or mad at anyone’.

They said: “When he is bored, he will just crack a joke and every one would just burst into instant laughter whether it’s at home or in school or playground. That painful memory is failing to go away.

The family of Nathaniel Shani have paid tribute to him
The family of Nathaniel Shani have paid tribute to him

“The scars you have left us with, Nattie, may heal but are very visible to anyone we meet today. That permanent change in our life is painful.

“I walked into a Manchester market street shop a week ago, the chap serving me noticed my pendant, and said to me, “I know who you are, my condolences”. That’s how people know me now Nathaniel, it’s life-changing.”

His sudden, tragic death has also left his family suffering with ‘sleepless nights, constant use of antidepressants, uncontrollable tears’, and they describe their day-to-day existence as being ‘like a dream and that when we wake up, Nathaniel will be in his room sleeping’.


Speaking of knife crime, Nathaniel’s family said: “We want more to be done about knife crime with a total ban of carrying knives in our streets. There is no knife too small to cause harm or serious damage.

Nathaniel Shani was an air cadet
Nathaniel Shani was an air cadet

“We want parents to take part and responsibility in ensuring their kids don’t carry knives or held liable vicariously. Parents need to be given some control over their kids, if they suspect any unusual behaviours and challenge their children they must not be penalised.

“Schools must disclose and discuss with parents any information regarding their children, these can be picked up before someone loses their life.

“There is no safeguarding without involvement of the parents.

“Our wish is that more powers need to be given to police to pin down those carrying knives, prosecute and award longer sentences.


“Our plea is for everyone to ‘Say No to Knives, No Knife is too Small’.”

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Featured image: GMP