Heartwarming moment devastated strangers release butterflies as they hold a touching memorial for little Willow Dunn, 4, after she was ‘left to starve to death in her crib’
- A heartfelt memorial has been held to honour the life of Willow Dunn, 4
- Her own family is accused of her murder after her body was found last month
- Total strangers organised an event in her honour at Brisbane on Saturday
- Butterflies were released and bubbles blown to honour the toddler’s life
The body of Willow Dunn (pictured, in 2017) was found inside her crib of the family’s home
Devastated strangers have come together to mourn the tragic loss of a little girl with Down syndrome as her own father stands accused of her murder.
Butterflies were released to honour the memory of Willow Dunn, four, during an emotional public memorial held in Brisbane’s Cannon Hill Park on Saturday.
The toddler’s decomposing body was found inside her crib in her family home last month.
Her stepmother and father stand accused of murder after the toddler was allegedly starved to death.
Parents whose children also have Down syndrome gathered to celebrate the little girl’s life on Saturday morning, holding a memorial in her memory.
The event was organised by the city’s T21 group – a support network for parents of children with Down Syndrome, also known as Trisomy 21.
Total strangers have come together to mourn the tragic loss of a little girl with Down syndrome (pictured, the memorial on Saturday) as her own family stands accused of her murder
The event (pictured) was organised by the city’s T21 group – a support network for parents of children with Down Syndrome, also known as Trisomy 21
Organisers released butterflies and blew bubbles in a symbolic gesture to honour Willow’s life (pictured)
Organisers released butterflies and blew bubbles in a symbolic gesture to honour her life.
One of them was Kathy Dillon, who told Daily Mail Australia someone needed to give Willow a sendoff.
‘Every child deserves love and support,’ she said.
‘I am happy now she is with her mummy, safe as she should be.’
The butterfly is a symbol of Down syndrome awareness.
Four butterflies were released to honour Willow, while a fifth butterfly was released in honour of her biological mother who died after giving birth.
Ms Dillon wanted parents to reach out if they are struggling.
Organiser told Daily Mail Australia someone needed to give Willow a sendoff, so they organised the touching memorial (pictured)
Four butterflies were released to honour Willow at the memorial (pictured), while a fifth butterfly was released in honour of Willow’s biological mother who died after giving birth
Flowers, butterflies and teddy bears all featured heavily throughout the memorial service
‘Things get bad in any home. Times can be tough.’
Celebrant Kellie Rainbow told the gathered crowds the toddler’s death was a painful experience for so many people.
‘The passing of Willow hurts so much because her life was short and her story incomplete,’ she said.
Meanwhile another mother whose son has Down syndrome, Divina Taschke, said it was difficult for many of the families at the memorial not to empathise.
‘Who wouldn’t be touched by such a horrific story,’ she told the Courier Mail.
‘It hit way too close to home. You think about how pure and innocent all children are but children with Down syndrome just give nothing but love. ‘
The toddler’s father Mark James Dunn, 43, and his girlfriend Shannon White, 43, were both charged with murder in the weeks since the four-year-old’s death.
Her body was allegedly found in a back bedroom inside the rented home on Bent Street in Cannon Hill, where she lived with her father, stepmother and stepsister.
Naomi Dunn (pictured) died on November 5, 2015 giving birth to her daughter Willow