The distraught sister of Jade says her family will never come to terms with the “torture” of their loss.
After the sentencing of James Gray for her murder yesterday, Becki Watson, 25, described her younger sister as an “outgoing, ditzy, loving mother” who just wanted to be loved herself.
She said the family was still in shock after the sentencing but admitted they had “finally got justice” for Jade.
Speaking about the impact the murder had had on her family, Becki said: “It’s been torture.
“Jade was only 22 and had her whole life ahead of her with her two children, Jacob and Ella.
“She was the most loving mother and had many friends.
“I still expect to get a phonecall or text off her to meet up.
“If it was one thing Jade wanted more in life it was to love and be loved.
“Now justice has been done, no sentence will ever bring her back or justify what a lovely person that we have lost.
“We will never come to terms with losing Jade so cruelly and suddenly.
“Jade was blonde and ditzy. She was outgoing and was also the most caring mum. She had a right laugh on her too.”
Becki added: “Jade’s death has had the worst impact on our family you could imagine.
“It’s still a bit of a shock. We wanted a lot more than 15 years but today’s the day we have finally got justice for my beautiful sister Jade. She was the best.
“Her children, Jacob and Ella, are still too young to realise what has happened to their mum.
“We would like to thank family and friends for their continued support during this difficult time. As well as those who have both raised funds and made donations in Jade’s memory.”
Also speaking after the case, Detective Superintendent Mark Ridley, who led the murder investigation, said he hoped the the verdict and sentence would now give Miss Watson’s family, who attended the trial throughout, both justice and comfort.
He said: "This was a very sad case, but the important thing for Jade's family is that they now have justice.
"Jade was much loved by her children, her family and her friends, and we hope that the conviction of James Gray will help to give them some comfort."
Jade Watson’s family and friends have mounted an online appeal to fund a gravestone in her memory.
It is hoped the appeal will raise £1,000 for a headstone at St Cuthberts Church, Wrose Road, Wrose, Shipley, aimed at giving her two young children, Jacob and Ella, a place to remember her, known as ‘mummy’s garden’.
The children, who now refer to their mother as ‘Mummy Moon’, are being cared for by their maternal grandmother Julie Johnston.
Writing on the appeal website, Jade’s best friend, Jodie-Louise Farrer-Lovatt, said: “In December (2013) she was buried, but she unfortunately has no proper headstone on her grave.
“I am hoping that we can help raise money to get her the headstone she deserves so her two young children can go to visit their ‘mummy’s garden’ and have somewhere special for them to visit and remember their mummy.”
She added: “Jade was one of the nicest people you could ever wish to meet, she didn't like to speak or think bad of anybody, if you showed her you were loyal she’d do anything for you, she really was one of a kind.
“The children have plenty of memories to remember their mummy by, but the best gift they could have would be to have a special place, ‘mummy’s garden’, to visit and make special for their precious mummy.”
To donate to Miss Watson’s gravestone appeal, go to gofundme.com/Jadewatsonfund