- (Photo: REUTERS/Dylan Martinez)
The "Royal hoax" nurse has had a memorial held for her in a Catholic parish church in India, with more than 2,000 mourners turning out to pay their respects.
Jacintha Saldanha's body was flown to her native India recently and taken to a small town where her funeral was held. There was a huge turnout at Our Lady of Health Church in Shirva, near Mangalore, for the 46 year old nurse, who took her own life recently after being tricked by a pair of Australian DJs into allowing private medical information about Duchess Kate Middleton to be given out.
Sky News' India Correspondent Alex Rossi reported, "She was a respected member of the community here. When you speak to people amongst those crowds, they will tell you that she was extremely well-liked."
Saldanha was found hanged at her living quarters on Dec. 7 in London's King Edward VII's Hospital. She had been one of the nurses helping to treat Kate Middleton as she was being treated for dehydration and severe morning sickness.
Her suicide came just a few days after Saldanha had been tricked by a pair of Australian DJs into believing they were the Queen and the Prince of Wales. Believing they were Royal family members, she transferred the DJs to another nurse who then gave out private information to the DJs about Middleton's condition.
The nurse's husband and two teenage children arrived in India two days ago with her body. The family had lived in the area 12 years ago before moving to London.
Saldanha's husband has said that he would stay in Shirva over the Christmas period and mourn with the rest of the family there, before returning to the United Kingdom with his children.
A friend of the family read out a statement from the husband:
"The events of the last week have shattered our lives and we barely have any strength to grieve.
"The incidents leading to this tragedy are being investigated by the London Metropolitan Police and they have assured us of a full and fair investigation."
At a memorial mass at Westminster Cathedral on Saturday he had also said, "My wife, you were the light in my darkness, who always showed me the way forward. From the day we met, you always stood by me in times of hardship and happiness. I feel a part of me has been ripped out."
The nurse's 14 year old daughter also paid tribute to her mother: "We will miss your laughter, the loving memories and the good times we had together. The house is an empty dwelling without your presence. We are shattered and there's an un-fillable void in our lives."
Her 16 year old son also spoke, saying: "Our mother, kind hearted, generous and a well-respected woman in both of our lives. You were the core of the family who kept us together."
Here is a video report of the nurse's funeral: