Mourners say goodbye to Marie

FOR the second time in just four weeks an Ipswich community was today preparing to say farewell to one of its children.Hundreds of mourners from Stoke Park and Maidenhall were expected to attend the funeral of Marie Mutimer at Stoke Green Baptist Church.

FOR the second time in just four weeks an Ipswich community was today preparing to say farewell to one of its children.

Hundreds of mourners from Stoke Park and Maidenhall were expected to attend the funeral of Marie Mutimer at Stoke Green Baptist Church.

Many of the same faces would have filled the church a month ago when Marie's friend Shona Gill was also laid to rest.

Today, classmates, teachers, friends and family were all due to pay tribute to 13-year-old Marie.

The youngster fell ill on Christmas Eve and despite the desperate efforts of doctors she died on Christmas Day.

A flu bug had attacked Marie's heart valve when she was younger and it was this which led to her sudden death.

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A miracle child, she was born to her parents after they suffered eight miscarriages and today's service was expected to pay thanks for her life.

Janice Mutimer, Marie's mum, said: "At the end of the service we are having Abba's Thank you for the Music because we are so happy that we had Marie for that time and for the music of having a teenage girl.

"Her TV music and computer games and singing in the bathroom and stomping around the house, we had all that music and we are glad we had it.

"It is terribly quiet now."

Marie's parents were expecting to walk behind the hearse on the way to the church and were planning to dress Marie's coffin with floral and balloon tributes.

Mrs Mutimer added: "We have got two big dolphin balloons because Marie loved them.

"I wanted to get flowers in the shape of a dolphin but it was too hard.

"Her room was full of dolphins, she wanted to swim with them and she wrote poems about them.

Stoke High School's orchestra were also due to play prior to the service as Marie was shortly to become a member of the band.

Youngsters from the school have been sending their tributes to Marie's parents and some of these were expected to be included in the service led by Robert Findlay.

Rev Findlay was also due to reflect the joyful memories of Marie and the feelings of grief at her sudden death.

He said: "It was shocking and unbelievable that this secure and happy family was to have its Christmas preparations stopped by the death of their thirteen-year-old daughter.

"No one can explain why such terrible things happen but we hope that the love of family, church, friends and colleagues will bring comfort and strength to Marie's parents as they slowly begin to look to the future."

Marie was a committed member of Stoke Green Baptist Church and was part of the young people's group.

Some of her favourite hymns were due to be sung at today's service including I'm Special and Be Bold, Be Brave.

Outside school Marie also took part in life saving classes, hoping one day to become a lifeguard.

Members of the club were due to attend the service along with guides from Marie's pack.

The guide's flag was to be draped across the organ.

Following the service Marie was due to be cremated at Ipswich Crematorium.

Mrs Mutimer added: "At the crematorium we will go in to Love Is All Around by Wet Wet Wet because there will never be an end to our family –Team Mutimer.

"We will leave to Up Town Girl because we can leave her to do what she loved which was going up the town shopping."

n. Marie's funeral was due to take place at 1pm at Stoke Green Baptist Church in Halifax Road, Ipswich.

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