It was unexpected as it was savage, as a man pulled out a knife and just started stabbing David Amess.
The violent crime left the 69-year-old veteran Conservative MP gasping for life on the floor of the church hall.
David Amess was grievously injured by more than a dozen puncture wounds that medical staff, battling to save him couldn’t stabilise him enough to take him to hospital, and after two desperate hours, a helicopter air ambulance, which had landed in a nearby field took off again, empty.
David Amess was a dedicated constituency MP who’d dedicated his life to engaging with residents, trying to help with their problems.
When he arrived for his regular surgery at Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh on Sea, Essex, shortly before midday, numerous people were waiting to see him.
John Lamb, a Conservative councillor who raced to the church when he learned of what had happened, said he was doing a surgery in the Methodist church to talk to local people and pick up on their problems, and he said that he was informed that when he went in for his surgery, people were waiting to see him and that one of them literally got a knife out and just started stabbing him.
And he said he was with a female member of staff from his constituency office and another female member of staff from his parliamentary office.
Speaking outside the church, the upset councillor said it had been two hours since it had occurred, and they were still working on him, and that he hadn’t been taken to the hospital, and that he was a family man and that he had four daughters and a son.
The unmerciful onslaught on David Amess was over in seconds, but the knifeman didn’t seem to have been in a rush to flee the murder scene.
Terrified members of the public dialled 999, and Lee Jordison, 40, who works in nearby Hicks butchers, said it was all very shocking, and that he’d worked there and live there all of his life and had never seen anything like this and it was terrible.
Officers from Essex Police were the first to arrive, within five minutes, followed moments later by an armed response unit.
They found the 25-year-old suspect still inside the church hall, and also recovered a knife. The alleged killer was led out to a police van.
Relatives of murdered MP David Amess have now joined together with hundreds of residents in an emotional outpouring of sadness as the nation mourns the passing of a veteran politician who devoted almost 40 years of his life to his community.
Steady streams of people have left flowers and written words of support outside the murder scene at Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh on Sea, Essex over the past 24 hours, while others tearfully recalled the important work David Amess did in his community.
Those visibly shaken mourners who left decorative tributes included David Amess’s family members, whose powerful message praised a great man, husband, father and member of their family.
On Friday afternoon, horrified constituents waiting to see the veteran MP watched in horror as a lone knifeman, considered to be an Islamic extremist, waited calmly in a queue to meet David Amess before jumping out and stabbing him 17 times.
The terror suspect, a 25-year-old Britain of Somali descent who lived in the Southend West area, was later arrested over the brutal stabbing of David Amess and may have previously been referred to an anti-radicalisation programme.
Rest In Peace David, who was a wonderful MP, husband and father to his children, and will be sadly missed by all.