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Tributes paid to courageous Padiham student who had double lung transplant
HUNDREDS of friends have paid tribute to an ‘inspirational’ Padiham teenager, who has died following a double lung transplant.
Hayley Barker, 17, passed away on Wednesday night from an infection she contracted after her 10-hour operation in August.
One of Hayley’s former headteachers said she had ‘touched the lives of so many people’.
Hayley suffered from bronchiolitis obliterans, which made it difficult for her to breathe, and underwent her transplant on August 10 after a year-long wait.
She was rushed into intensive care just a fortnight later and had several blood and platelet transfusions to try to shift the bug.
But on Thursday Hayley’s mum, Lisa, posted on Facebook: “Hayley went to sleep last night and is now in the loving arms of her grandma xxxx.”
Speaking from the Hayley’s home in Dryden Street, her auntie, Kerry Yates, said her parents were still coming to terms with their loss.
Kathleen McKeating, headteacher at Hayley’s former school, St John the Baptist RC Primary, in Padiham, said: “Hayley was a brave and inspirational young lady who we will never forget and are so proud to call a pupil of St John’s.
“In 2007 she was selected by her friends to be our ‘Pupil of the Year’ which is a reflection of just how well thought of and popular she was.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with all the family at this sad time.”
Michael King, headteacher at St Augustine’s RC High School in Billington, where Hayley took her GCSEs, said: “Everybody linked to St Augustine’s was saddened by the news of Hayley’s passing.
“She will be remembered for her courage, determination, enthusiasm, hard work, kindness and joy.
“Despite the difficulties she faced with her illness, she never once complained and her perseverance and optimism are an inspiration to all of us.
“So many staff and pupils at the school remember Hayley with great fondness and our thoughts and prayers are with her family at this time.”
Hayley, who campaigned to raise awareness of organ donation, had previously beaten leukaemia twice and had a bone marrow transplant in 2010.
She is survived by her parents, Lisa, 40, and Garry, 39, her brother Leighton, five, and her sister Leah, 14.
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