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Girl, 15, dies of Covid on day she was due to get jab as mum warns others

Jorja Halliday, from Portsmouth tested positive for the coronavirus after having flu-like symptoms which escalated to the point where her heart rate was double its normal pace

Jorja Halliday tested positive after having flu like symptoms

A mother has warned of children being too ‘blase’ about Covid after her 15-year-old daughter died from the virus – on the day she was due to be vaccinated.

Jorja Halliday tested positive after having flu like symptoms which escalated to the point where her heart rate was double its normal pace.

The ‘courageous’ and ‘kind-hearted’ young girl sadly died in hospital just four days after receiving her PCR test results with her mum by her side, holding her hand.

What began as a sore throat and the inability to eat, later turned into her incapacity to keep water down and the aspiring musician was rushed to hospital.

Despite being placed on a ventilator at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth, Hants, Jorja never stabilised as her heart was under too much strain.



The ‘courageous’ and ‘kind-hearted’ young girl sadly died in hospital just four days after receiving her PCR test results
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Image:

Portsmouth News/Solent News)




Preliminary results from the hospital’s medical examiner indicate the ‘beautiful young lady’ had Covid myocarditis, heart inflammation caused by the virus.

Her mother, Tracey Halliday, said: “They realised how serious it was and I was still allowed to touch her, hold her hand, hug her and everything else.

“They did allow me that. I’m at the point where I can’t comprehend that it’s happened.

“I was with her the whole time. They tried to put her on a ventilator to give her body a chance to recover. Her heart rate didn’t stabilise. Her heart couldn’t take the strain.

“They worked as well as I think they could medically but were unable to save her. She had the best of care, I know that they did everything they could to save her.”

But that does not make it any easier for the 40 year old mum of four to comprehend.



What began as a sore throat and the inability to eat, later turned into her incapacity to keep water down and the aspiring musician was rushed to hospital
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Image:

Portsmouth News/Solent News)




“It’s heart wrenching because your kids are always meant to outlive you, and that’s the one thing I can’t get over.

“I like to think of myself as a thinker, I like to keep busy but I do take some time for myself and grieve with the children,” she said.

Jorja was the eldest of five children. She had two sisters Julie, 12, and Daisie, four, and two younger brothers, Kallum, six, and Oscar who is just 18 months and too young to understand what has happened.

“When I’m on my own, when they’ve gone to bed, and when I get the reminders throughout the day, I burst into tears.

“She was a loving girl and she had lots of friends. She was very active, she liked to go out and spend time with her friends and loved spending time with her brothers and sisters.

“Growing up she turned into a beautiful young lady, always wanting to help others, always there for everybody when they needed them,” she continued.

Ms Halliday fears children are too ‘blase’ about the virus – with parents presuming their kids will simply recover.

She continued: “She was going to have the jab on Tuesday. But because she tested positive on Saturday she was isolating. When her isolation period was over she was going to get it.



Her martial arts teacher said she was a ‘role model’ to many of the other children at her training school
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Image:

Portsmouth News/Solent News)




“The day that she passed away was the day that she would have had it done.”

The ‘kind-hearted’ young girl died on September 28, outlived by her 62 year old grandmother, Julia Halliday, who said: “She was everything.”

Her martial arts teacher, Badr Bahaj, said she was a ‘role model’ to many of the other children at her training school, the AG Martial Arts centre in Portsmouth, Hants.

He said: “All the kids knew her and loved her and she was a role model to so many. It’s a shame and absolutely gutting.

“Jorja was one of the children that really did develop and thrive in our club.

“She wanted to teach it when she was older. She also had a passion for learning and martial arts was no exception. It’s devastating, it’s going to break so many hearts.

“She’s someone we’ll never forget. She’s one of the star students.”

Before her passing, Jorja was working towards her GCSEs at The Portsmouth Academy, Hants, where she will be greatly missed.









The school principal, Rachel Grey, said: “We are desperately sad about the tragic death of one of our much-loved students. At this incredibly sad time, our hearts go out to her family, whom Jorja loved dearly.

“Jorja was a kind-hearted, principled and passionate young person who was enormously popular among her peers in Year 11 and across the whole school.

“She was, indeed, a friend to us all. She stood up for community values and was an excellent student, especially talented in art.

“Our school community is united in our grief and in deep shock.

“We are pulling together during this very difficult time, including providing our students with all the support they need, including through our specialist pastoral teams.”

The coronavirus vaccine is currently being offered to children 12-years-old and over.



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