Funeral held for nurse in Kate hoax

A service was held in London on Saturday to mourn the death of a nurse found hanging in her room three days after she had been duped by a hoax call from Australian DJs about the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge.

Family is 'shattered,' says daughter

The husband of nurse Jacintha Saldanha Benedict Barboza, centre, holds his son Junal, right, and daughter Lisha during her funeral in her hometown Shirva, near Mangalore in southwest India on Monday. Saldanha was found hanging in her room days after she had been duped by a hoax call from an Australian radio station about the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge. (Rafiq Maqbool/Associated Press)

A service was held in London on Saturday to mourn the death of a nurse found hanging in her room three days after she had been duped by a hoax call from Australian DJs about the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge.

The death of Jacintha Saldanha, 46, on Dec. 7 is being investigated as an apparent suicide.

Saldanha's family gave an emotional tribute outside of London's Westminster Cathedral on Saturday following a memorial mass mourning the loss of the mother of two.

Her husband Benedict, flanked by his two children, called Jacintha "the light of my darkness," saying through tears that "nobody can take that place in my life ever again."

"I feel a part of me has been ripped out," he said. "Without your beautiful smile and sparkling personality, the house is an empty place to live."

Saldanha's son Junal spoke of the encouragement he had received from his mother, whose priority for her children was a good education.

"You were the core of the family who kept us together," he said. "You worked tirelessly to give us everything that we have today."

Saldanha's daughter Lisha said she will miss her mother's laughter, saying the family is "shattered."

Her father expressed thanks for an outpouring of support following the death of Saldanha — singling out the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge for their kind words upon the loss of his wife.

Saldanha answered the phone at London's King Edward VII's Hospital when the DJs called seeking information about the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, who was being treated for severe morning sickness.

The DJs impersonated Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles, and Saldanha was tricked into transferring the call to another nurse, who revealed private details about the condition of the duchess.

The DJs, 2DayFM's Mel Greig and Michael Christian, apologized for the prank in emotional interviews on Australian TV, saying they never expected their call would be put through. The show was taken off the air and the DJs have been suspended.