Heartbreaking moment small pink coffin for tragic girl, 5, who died from Strep A, driven through street ahead of funeral
A SMALL pink coffin for a five-year-old girl who tragically died from Strep A was wheeled through the streets ahead of her funeral today.
Balloons were released into the sky as a large crowd gathered in Belfast for the funeral of little Stella-Lily McCorkindale.
Several mourners wore rainbow-colored ties as they said goodbye to the young girl.
Floral tributes – including ones in the form of an angel and a teddy bear – were laid outside her grandmother’s house in the north of the city ahead of Wednesday afternoon’s funeral.
More than a hundred people lined the front of the townhouse as Stella-Lily’s pink coffin, painted with rainbows and stars, was brought outside.
Taylor Swift’s song Shake it Off was played before balloons of different colors were released into the sky.
The coffin was then placed in a horse-drawn carriage leading a funeral procession on a slow walk to nearby Shankill Road.
From there, the mourners traveled on to Roselawn Crematorium on the east side of the city.
Stella-Lily, a student at Black Mountain Primary School, died last week from an illness linked to the Strep A bacterial infection.
The school described her death as a “tragic loss”.
“Stella-Lily was a very bright and talented little girl and was well loved by both staff and children and will be greatly missed by everyone at school,” the school said.
Stella-Lily’s heartbroken father said he took her to the emergency room three times before she became seriously ill and later died.
Robert McCorkindale said his daughter felt ill over the weekend of November 26 with a cold and fever.
The parent said a lack of understanding of Strep A symptoms by hospital staff on his first visit caused delays in getting Stella-Lily the proper tests.
Mr McCorkindale says he felt like an “overbearing father” and his daughter was given Lucozade to top up her electrolytes before they traveled home.
She was taken to the hospital by her mother the next day, where she was helped with her hydration but allowed to return home.
But by November 30, Stella-Lily’s condition had seriously deteriorated and she was hospitalized again.
Doctors ordered tests because they feared the boy had sepsis, and the results came back positive for Strep A.
The devastated father said once his daughter was admitted the caring staff “did everything” to help her.
But the infection had spread throughout the girl’s body and doctors considered amputating her legs.
And on Monday, Stella-Lily became too sick from the infection and her life support was turned off.
Robert took to social media to thank people for their thoughts and prayers after the boy died in hospital.
“I want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart,” he said.
“If prayers, thoughts, feelings and love could have worked, she would have walked out of the hospital holding her father’s hand.”
A GoFundMe page was created to help the family.
The deaths of 16 children with Strep A have been confirmed in the UK in recent months.
They include Muhammed Ibrahim Ali, four, from High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, and Hanna Roap, seven, from Penarth, Vale of Glamorgan.
As cases of scarlet fever and Strep A rage across the UK, several primary schools have made the decision to close.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said the last time there was an intense phase of Strep A infection was 2017-18, when four deaths were recorded in England over the same period.
He said any parents concerned should contact the NHS.