A FAMILY have paid tribute to their “beautiful little miracle” who was the inspiration for a £36,000 fundraising campaign.
Victoria Dyer suffered complications at birth but defied doctors’ predictions that she wouldn’t survive, going on to celebrate her 13th birthday in January.
In recent years her health had deteriorated, and sadly on April 29, she died in her mother Theresa’s arms, surrounded by her family, at Oxford’s Helen and Douglas House.
Victoria, who had cerebral palsy, inspired her family, including dad Danny, 50, and brothers Daniel, 23, Ben, 22, and Luke, 17, and friends to raise cash for organisations across Oxfordshire including SSNAP, Rosy, Helen House Hospice and Bardwell School.
In the days following her death the family received more than 200 cards, flowers and messages.
Mrs Dyer, 50, said: “I was cuddling her and she just quietly slipped away.
“It was very much a shock, I knew she was on her way, but didn’t think it would be so quick. I think she chose the time and place.”
In 2001 doctors at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital told the Dyer family Victoria would not survive and they made the agonising decision to turn off her life support machine.
But little Victoria proved everyone wrong.
Two years ago the family faced losing Victoria again, but she battled back.
Since then the Dyer family have cared for her around the clock at home with support from Rosy and Helen House nurses.
Mrs Dyer, of Somerville Drive, Bicester, said: “I think we gave her as much as we could. It was all about quality of life.
“To have those 13 years it was a miracle.
“She was a very beautiful girl, always smiling and never really complained. She always had a smile on her face and a twinkle in her eyes.”
They have pledged to carry on fundraising to help the organisations that support many other families across the county. Mrs Dyer said: “We value, and know how important they are. We could not have done what we did without that back-up and that support.”
A “much-loved” pupil at Bardwell School since she was two-and-a-half, Victoria was described by her friends as “nice, funny, smiley and someone who loved gossip and smiled a lot.”
Headteacher John Riches said: “Our whole school is saddened by the loss of Victoria, but we have many happy memories of her time in school and she will be remembered fondly.’’
Her funeral takes place tomorrow at St Edburg’s Church, Bicester, at 1pm.
Our top stories:
8:30am Saturday 29th August 2015
A TOP transplant surgeon has backed the Oxford Mail organ donation campaign saying more donors are needed than ever before.
9:00am Saturday 29th August 2015
A RAPIST who disappeared before his trial to escape justice is believed to have had a second passport he could have used to flee the country.
8:00am Saturday 29th August 2015
MOVING tributes were paid to Carole Roberts yesterday at the former Lord Mayor of Oxford’s funeral.
7:00am Saturday 29th August 2015
Seven men have appeared in court accused of a catalogue of sex offences.
6:30am Saturday 29th August 2015
PLANS for an Oxford Garden City could return as the Vale looks to accommodate 4,000 new homes.
6:00am Saturday 29th August 2015
FULL plans have been revealed for 140 new homes in Littlemore near Heyford Hill Sainsbury’s.
2:13pm Friday 28th August 2015
A CYCLIST has suffered “serious injuries” after being involved in a collision with a car in Abingdon.
8:30am Friday 28th August 2015
AN MP last night demanded answers about how a rapist who was released on bail could have escaped justice.
2:54pm Friday 28th August 2015
TRAFFIC is moving slowly on the M40 near Bicester this afternoon due to an electrical fire.
2:14pm Friday 28th August 2015
A CYCLIST was involved in a collision with a van this morning in Oxford.
9:00am Friday 28th August 2015
A POLICING finance boss has vowed Thames Valley Police will not be hit with a predicted £43.7m cuts but refused to be drawn on how much could be axed.
8:00am Friday 28th August 2015
AIR show managers in Oxfordshire are reviewing how their events are run in the wake the Shoreham crash, which is thought to have killed at least 11 people.
7:00am Friday 28th August 2015
MOTORISTS have been warned of more congestion when the new school year starts next week.
6:30am Friday 28th August 2015
OXFORD University has revealed it is poised to sell the former paper mill site at Wolvercote.