Heartfelt tributes have been pouring in for a ‘truly remarkable’ Dickens Heath girl who tragically lost her battle with cancer.
Pupils and staff at Aoife O’Connor’s school, St Peter’s in Solihull, have been so inspired by the 14-year-old’s bravery and fighting spirit, that they want to create a permanent memorial in her memory.
Aoife was diagnosed with a brain tumour less than a year ago and despite undergoing radiotherapy treatment and having a determination to beat cancer, she passed away in the arms of her parents on October 14.
Her heartbroken family - parents Mark and Claire and sisters Niamh and Ciara - are determined for Aoife’s memory to live on.
Speaking to the Solihull News this week, Aoife’s father Mark said: “Aoife cared immensely about her friends, she just wanted to help people. She wasn’t particularly career minded, she just wanted to be a mummy, she loved children.
“The support from the community has been fantastic, which is an understatement. Credit has to go to the children - to Aoife’s friends. Our house has been full of young people paying their respects.
“Pink ribbons have been put around the village in Aoife’s memory and a balloon release was held at Dickens Heath Park, again all arranged by the children.”
Aoife raised money for various charities and achieved her dream of becoming a coach for Elmdon netball team before her death.
Her family are now raising money for Brain Tumour UK in Aoife’s memory.
Mark added: “We don’t want anyone else to go through what Aoife went through and we don’t want children to be scared of their illness.”
Her mother Claire described her daughter as ‘an amazing, unique, spirited loving daughter and sister.’
Frances McGarry, headteacher of St Peters School, added: “Aoife was a truly remarkable girl who coped admirably with her illness.
“She never complained, didn’t want any fuss and thought of others to the end.”
To make a donation visit www.justgiving.com/aoife-oconnor