Morgan Gruell has paid tribute to her late sister Jaimi Kenny after laying her to rest on Saturday.
A devastated Morgan said that Jaimi, who died at the age of 33 last Monday after battling alcoholism and an eating disorder, saw the beauty in everyone and everything, and called her the ‘most sentimental person’ she has ever known.
‘I will always remember her taking the time to stop and take a photo of a pretty flower, an interesting door, or her feet standing next to crunchy leaves that had fallen from the trees,’ she wrote in a heartbreaking Instagram post, alongside a recent photo of the pair together.
‘We will continue to miss and love you always’: Morgan Gruell (right) paid tribute to her late sister Jaimi Kenny (left) on Sunday following her funeral. In a heartbreaking Instagram post, she called Jaimi the ‘most sentimental person’ she has ever known
‘I promise to always appreciate these things as she did,’ Morgan continued.
‘You were surrounded by so much love and beauty. Fairy lights everywhere, flowers everywhere, love everywhere. It was a service fitted for the queen of all things pretty, you would have loved it. We will continue to miss and love you always.’
Morgan went on to thank the public for ‘all the messages of love and support that have been pouring in over the past week’.
‘It means the world to us to know how very loved and adored she was by all who met her,’ she concluded.
Jaimi died at Sunshine Coast University Hospital last Monday surrounded by her family, following a long battle with an eating disorder and alcoholism.
Support: Morgan (L) and Lisa (R) were seen embracing each other at the conclusion of the heartbreaking funeral service
She was buried at a 100-person funeral on the Sunshine Coast on Saturday, which was attended by Jaimi’s Olympian mother Lisa Curry, athlete father Grant Kenny, and brother Jett Kenny.
Lisa’s new husband Mark Tabone was also seen comforting a distraught Lisa as Jaimi’s white coffin, covered in pink and orange dahlias and baby’s breath, was carried out of the chapel and placed in the back of a hearse.
Morgan, who is pregnant, attended the church ceremony with her husband Ryan and their two-year-old son Flynn.
Prior to her death, Jaimi had expressed her desire to one day have a family of her own, and absolutely doted on the children in her family.
Beautiful: ‘It was a service fitted for the queen of all things pretty, you would have loved it’, Morgan (R) wrote of her sister’s (L) funeral
Heartbreaking: Jett, Morgan and their devastated parents embraced as Jaimi’s white coffin, covered in pink and orange dahlias and baby’s breath, was placed in the back of the hearse and carried away
After her parents’ marriage deteriorated, Ironman Grant went on to have a daughter named Trixie Belle with radio presenter Fifi Box.
Trixie was the centre of Jaimi’s universe, and the nanny even moved down to Melbourne to live closer to the child and her mother.
‘Jaimi absolutely adored children and was especially close to Trixie,’ a family friend told Sunshine Coast Daily, adding that her younger half-sister gave her ‘a whole new lease on life’.
Pure love: Prior to her death, Jaimi had expressed her desire to one day have a family of her own, and absolutely doted on the children in her family. Jaimi (left) pictured with Fifi Box’s daughter Trixie (right)
But her struggles with mental health brought her back to the Sunshine Coast and her parents shortly after making the move south.
She worked closely with the End ED clinic, which specialises in eating disorder treatment and recovery.
Meanwhile, Jaimi met and fell in love with local business owner Lachy Crossley on the Sunshine Coast.
His mother Gail said ‘they had plans to be together forever… They were certainly in love’.
‘You could just see the love in their eyes that they had for each other. People described them as a modern-day Romeo and Juliet,’ she added.
‘Jaimi absolutely adored children’: Trixie was the centre of Jaimi’s universe, and the nanny even moved down to Melbourne to live closer to the child and her mother
But in 2017, Lachy died in circumstances ‘too heartbreaking’ for the family to discuss.
The happy couple had recently moved in together and had began discussing their future. They both loved each other and loved children even more.
The tragedy plunged Jaimi further into a depression and she spent the subsequent years in and out of hospital and the eating disorder clinic.
Her medical team tried everything, including blood transfusions, to extend her life.
Family ties: Lisa is pictured with her son Jett (left), surviving daughter Morgan (right) and her grandson Flynn
The Curry-Kenny clan have repeatedly thanked her medical team for their hard work in maintaining Jaimi’s quality of life.
On Sunday, Lisa also shared a heartbreaking tribute to Instagram after farewelling her eldest child.
‘Yesterday, as the sun was setting, we said goodbye to you, our Jaimi,’ she wrote of the funeral.
‘Yesterday, as the sun was setting, we said goodbye to you’: On Sunday, Jaimi’s mother Lisa (right) shared a heartbreaking tribute to Instagram after farewelling her eldest child
‘As the last sun rays filtered through the trees onto you, fairy lights flickering everywhere around, with the most divine flowers surrounding you, and a room full of unconditional love, we farewelled you… always our bubba.
‘It was just perfect… beautiful, quiet, pretty and sparkly… just the way you would have wanted it.’
Lisa alluded to her daughter’s battle with the demons that led to her death – that at least now they would haunt her no more.
Tribute: Lisa posted this Instagram photo of Jaimi with her dog cropped into the shape of a heart and surrounded by flowers
‘Our little angel, you can now rest peacefully. Free of pain, free to flourish and free to grow, free to just be,’ she wrote.
‘Jaimi, as dad and I lovingly held you when you took your first breath, we lovingly held you as you took your last. Goodnight sweet girl… we hope you have a nice long sleep.’
Jaimi’s younger brother Jett penned his own somber tribute on Sunday, reflecting on the good times the close family had with his ‘biggest sister’.
Private battle: Jaimi had long battled an eating disorder, with her family supporting her through years of treatment at a private clinic (Jaimi, left, is pictured with her family at her sister Morgan’s 2016 wedding)
‘You were there whenever I needed you, you taught me how to cook gourmet food like roast potatoes, chicken and salad, and tacos – the essentials in our household,’ he wrote.
‘You gave me a slight insight into fashion by dressing me in up in dresses and putting makeup on me when I was young. You’d sit behind me while I ate dinner and would pick at anything pimple looking on my back – even if it was just a mole.
‘You were my second mother, you were my biggest sister, you were my friend, and you were a fighter until the very end.
‘You were there whenever I needed you’: Jaimi’s younger brother Jett (L) penned his own somber tribute on Sunday following the funeral, reflecting on the good times the close family with his ‘biggest sister’
‘Jaimi, I will love you forever and you will always have a place in my heart. I will miss you dearly, but cherish the moments we had together greatly. I love you so much, and I will see you again at some point.’
Jett also reflected on the funeral, thanking the people who were able to attend and those who couldn’t due to Queensland’s gathering limit due to coronavirus.
On Friday night, Morgan’s husband Ryan thanked the local community for their support and outpouring of love in the days since Jaimi’s death.
‘The condolences are so welcome and helpful’: On Friday night, Morgan’s (R) husband Ryan (L) thanked the local community for their support and outpouring of love in the days since Jaimi’s death. Pictured with their son Flynn
‘Thank you to everyone who has reached out and offered kind words, gifts, support and love to Jaimi’s family and I. The condolences are so welcome and helpful,’ he wrote alongside a photo with bouquets of flowers.
‘We have been sharing the messages with each other and although we may not have been able to offer a response we have received the love from all of it and are very appreciative.
‘Jaimi was so very loved and will be so very missed but the love we all share for her will keep her memory alive.’
‘For free and confidential support, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or the Butterfly Foundation for eating disorder concerns on 1800 ED HOPE
Gone too soon: Jaimi is the daughter of Lisa and her ex-husband, Australian ironman champion Grant Kenny (who is pictured with his daughter as a baby)