A council leader who shot his wife before turning the gun on himself has been laid to rest alongside her following a joint funeral.
Police believe North Norfolk District Council leader Keith Johnson, 58, killed his wife Andrea, 44, who was originally from Corby, outside their bungalow in Roughton, near Cromer, Norfolk, earlier this month.
Mr Johnson was found with the shotgun, registered to his wife, by his side and is thought to have made a telephone call to friends before taking his own life.
Despite the circumstances, Mrs Johnson’s parents, John and Janice Chadwick, said they felt “no animosity” towards Mr Johnson.
Today, Friday, their joint funeral took place at Cromer Parish Church with members of the community refusing to let the tragedy divide them.
A private burial in nearby Sheringham followed the ceremony and it is believed the couple were buried alongside one another.
Speaking before the funeral, Rev Canon David Court paid tribute to the families for their determination to celebrate the positive aspects of the Johnsons’ lives.
He said: “There is still a feeling of shock in the community. People are struggling to come to terms with the events and do not want to diminish the horror of those events.
“They were larger-than-life characters who were much loved in the town.
“She was a vibrant and bubbly person and he was gentle and very calm.
“I’ve been very impressed by the families who very much wanted a joint funeral.
“It would have been very easy to let bitterness take hold. They refused to do that and they wanted to celebrate all of the good years that Keith and Andrea had together.”
A bell tolled as first Mrs Johnson’s and then Mr Johnson’s coffins were carried into the church.
More than 600 people attended the ceremony and members of the public lined the streets of the seaside town to watch the funeral procession.
The council’s offices closed for the afternoon to allow staff and members to attend the funeral.
Staff from Homebase, where Mrs Johnson had worked in customer services, also attended.
During the ceremony, Mr Court spoke of the confusion experienced by the community in matching up “all the good that we knew with the events that have happened”.
Members of the congregation were asked to wear colourful clothes in honour of Mrs Johnson’s outgoing nature.
The ceremony was briefly interrupted as a paramedic tended to Mr Johnson’s brother, Trevor.
The Johnsons, who had both been previously married, had been together for 18 years and married in the parish church in 2004.
Detectives from Norfolk Police are continuing their investigation into the deaths to prepare a file for the coroner. They say they are not looking for anybody else as part of the inquiry.
Officers are looking into the couple’s private lives to help establish a motive for the killings.