Thanks of devastated couple

IN THE midst of their grief the parents of Marie Mutimer have today taken time to thank the medical staff who battled to save their daughter.The 13-year-old fell ill on Christmas Eve and died on Christmas Day despite the best efforts of doctors to revive her.

IN THE midst of their grief the parents of Marie Mutimer have today taken time to thank the medical staff who battled to save their daughter.

The 13-year-old fell ill on Christmas Eve and died on Christmas Day despite the best efforts of doctors to revive her.

Today her parents Janice and John have spoken of the tremendous support offered by hospital staff and the community in the days following their daughter's death.

Born after eight miscarriages, Marie was a miracle baby and an only child – the kindness of the community is now one of the few sources of strength for her distraught parents.

Mr Mutimer said: "We didn't think there was such a strong sense of community as there is but all sorts of people have been in.

"A lot of people have done a lot of things we didn't expect.

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"People round here are not in each others houses every five minutes but if they are needed they are there."

Mrs Mutimer added: "So many people have been coming round and it has been lovely.

"They are all scared to say anything but they have been coming."

Visitors to the Mutimers' home in Chatsworth Crescent have included the parents of 10-year-old Shona Gill who died from cancer at the beginning of December.

Marie and Shona had become friends at the young people's club at Stoke Green Baptist Church where Marie's funeral will take place just as Shona's did.

Mrs Mutimer added: "We have never been hugged by so many people.

"Shona's parents brought round a big bunch of flowers and they didn't need to do that.

"They have also said they will come to the funeral because we can't go through it on our own."

Marie's service will take place on January 10, 16 days after she passed away at Ipswich Hospital.

The cause of her sudden death remains unknown but doctors believe it may have been caused by an electrical impulse in the heart.

As a three-year-old Marie had developed a flu bug which attacked her heart and left a valve weak.

Her parents thought she may need an operation later in life but her condition had caused little concern.

She remained relatively healthy until Christmas Eve when she began to feel dizzy. Because of her condition her parents took her to hospital where she later died.

Despite this Marie's parents said medical staff did all they could and praised them for their efforts.

"They were wonderful at the hospital and moved heaven and earth to try to help her.

"The staff were sympathetic and understanding and one of the consultants rang us to say he was sorry, they had done their best but they were very sorry.

"They spent 45 minutes trying to resuscitate her and they could have given up a lot earlier," Mrs Mutimer added.

Doctors were in constant communication with their colleagues at Guys Hospital and worked tirelessly to try to save the youngster's life.

Mr Mutimer added: "They were telephoning and faxing heart traces and ECGs to Guys.

"There was no second opinion it was a fifth opinion. They got them out of bed and into work on Christmas Eve

"If she had been the Queen's grandchild it would have been no better – they couldn't have done any more.

"When I thanked the surgeon afterwards he couldn't stay because he was so overcome."

Mrs Mutimer added: "The consultant rang up on Tuesday and said it was the saddest thing he has ever done in 20 years."

Marie's funeral service will take place on Monday, January 10 at Stoke Green Baptist Church, followed my her cremation at Ipswich Cremetorium.

If you would like to pay tribute to Marie write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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