Archie Battersbee's devastated mother pays tribute to young boy who 'fought until the very end'
LONDON, UK: Archie Battersbee, 12, died on Saturday, August 6, after his life support was removed following a prolonged legal battle by his parents in an attempt to continue his care. Following his death, the family released a new photo of the youngster. The photo was released as part of the family's tribute to their beloved son's life. Archie is depicted as a small child, dressed to the nines in a grey suit, white shirt, and blue bowtie.
Archie's mother, Hollie Dance, confirmed his death at 12:15 pm on Saturday to The Guardian, saying she was the "proudest mum in the world" as he fought to the end. Hollie and ex-partner Paul Battersbee exhausted all legal options, including appeals to the United Nations and the European Court of Human Rights, to keep Archie on life support.
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However, the courts agreed with doctors at every stage that the young man had no chance of recovery because he was "brain stem dead," and that it was in his best interests to discontinue treatment. The court ruled on Friday that Archie could not be moved to a hospice and would have to be removed from life support in the hospital.
Archie was rushed to the hospital after being discovered at home with a ligature mark around his neck in April this year, after he took part in a dangerous social media trend. He was diagnosed with severe brain damage and kept on life support during the legal proceedings. A combination of medical interventions, including ventilation and drug treatments, kept him alive.
"Our thoughts, prayers, and support are with Archie's family at this tragic time," Andrea Williams, chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre, which has been supporting the family's case, said. "We will continue to support the family, as we have done throughout, ever since they came to us after being issued with last-minute legal proceedings to remove life support from Archie. We are thankful for the widespread public support for Archie and his family. It has been a privilege to stand alongside them."
Hollie previously stated that if her son was denied oxygen, she might give him mouth-to-mouth. It has not been confirmed whether the bereaved mother performed CPR on her son in his final moments. Hollie and Paul were said to have accepted that they had done everything possible and that Archie's treatment had come to an end.
"Such a beautiful little boy and he fought right until the very end, and I am so proud to be his mum," a devastated mother, Hollie said in a brief statement to the media. Ella Rose Carter, the fiancee of Archie's eldest brother Tom, added: "He was taken off medication at 10am, his stats remained stable until two hours later when they removed the ventilation. There is absolutely nothing dignified about watching a family member or a child suffocate. We hope no family has to go through what we have been through. It's barbaric."
On Friday, the broken-hearted mother said "I know I did everything I could. Everything. I know I’ve done a very good job being Archie’s mum. Based on my own childhood I was determined to be as good as a mother as I can possibly be and I feel like I have done that to the very best of my ability. It’s one of the reasons I am here."