Tribute to a brave little girl who lit up all our lives

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The grieving gran of our Pride in MK winner Charleigh Thomson has told how a phone call from her daughter shattered her world on Sunday evening.

Yvonne Forbes had seen daughter Christina and granddaughter Charleigh just hours earlier.

“I popped in as usual at lunchtime to see if they wanted anything from the shops and Charleigh was in fine form,” she said.

“She came running up and gave me kisses. I asked if she wanted me to buy her anything and she said: “Chocolate mousse and sweeties please’. Before I went she smothered me in kisses again.

“I remember thinking how well she looked. Her cousins, two little boys, were there and she played hide and seek with them in the afternoon. She was laughing and smiling and had a brilliant time.”

Charleigh had complained of tummy ache the previous evening but had seemed to thoroughly recover,” said Yvonne.

Just before 7pm came the call that will always haunt her.

“It was my daughter. She said Charleigh was saying she couldn’t breathe properly. I dropped everything and ran over there. I only live across the road so it took no time.”

Yvonne and Christina watched in horror as paramedics battle to revive the collapsed child.

“They rushed her to hospital and did everything they could. At one stage they found a pulse for a while. But then it stopped. There was nothing they could do.

“Our little girl, our beautiful brave little fighter was gone.

“After all the scares and all the battles over the years the end came out of the blue, just when everybody was least expecting it. We are broken, we don’t know how we will ever get over this. And we will never stop missing her for every minute of every day.

“Our only consolation is that our Charleigh is with the angels now, laughing with all the other little heart patients who didn’t make it, bossing them around and demanding her chocolate mousse.”

The family hope to hold the funeral next week and have requested family flowers only. However donations in memory of Charleigh can be sent to either Great Ormond Street Hospital or HW Mason and Sons Funeral Directors in Bletchley, telephone 01908 642700.

The family also hope to contribute to the Little Lives Appeal at MK hospital’s neonatal unit, whose staff helped save Charleigh’s life after she was born.