The family of aid worker John Chapman from Poole, who was killed in the Israeli air strike in Gaza, have said he will “forever be a hero”, adding: “He died trying to help people.”

In a statement issued through the Foreign Office, the family of John Chapman, who was one of seven World Central Kitchen aid workers killed in an Israeli air strike in Gaza on Monday, said: “We are devastated to have lost John, who was killed in Gaza.

“He died trying to help people and was subject to an inhumane act. He was an incredible father, husband, son and brother.

“We request we be given space and time to grieve appropriately.

“He was loved by many and will forever be a hero. He will be missed dearly”.

Mr Chapman, a father-of-two, was also said to be a former Royal Marine and served in the Special Boat Service, the special forces unit of the Royal Navy, according to The Sun.

He was one of three British aid workers killed by an Israeli air strike in Gaza have been hailed as “heroes” amid mounting international condemnation of the attack.

World Central Kitchen (WCK) confirmed British victims John Chapman, 57, James “Jim” Henderson, 33, and James Kirby, 47, who were working for the charity’s security team, were among seven of its staff killed.

The team’s leader, Lalzawmi “Zomi” Frankcom, 43, an Australian national, also died, along with American-Canadian dual citizen Jacob Flickinger, 33, Polish national Damian Sobol, 35, and Palestinian Saifeddin Issam Ayad Abutaha, 25.

The convoy was hit as it was leaving the Deir al-Balah warehouse, where the team had unloaded more than 100 tonnes of humanitarian food aid taken to Gaza on the maritime route, the charity said.

WCK immediately suspended operations in the region.

The attack has drawn international condemnation of what Israel called an “unintended strike”, with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak telling his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu he was appalled by the killings and demanding a thorough and transparent independent investigation.