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Archie Battersbee dies after parents lose legal battle over life support | Children

Written by Javed Iqbal

Archie Battersbee, the 12-year-old boy whose parents fought a protracted legal battle to prevent his life-support treatment being withdrawn, has died, his mother has said.

Speaking outside the Royal London hospital, Hollie Dance said he had “fought right to the end” and she was the “proudest mum in the world”.

Speaking through tears, she said: “Sadly Archie passed away at 12.15pm today. I just want to say I’m the proudest mum in the world.

“He was such a beautiful little boy. He fought right to the end and I’m so proud to be his mom.”

Hollie Dance (second left) surrounded by family and friends, outside the Royal London hospital
Hollie Dance (second left) surrounded by family and friends, outside the Royal London hospital Photo: Aaron Chown/PA

Dance and Archie’s father, Paul Battersbee, had in recent days made applications to the High Court, the Court of Appeal and the European Court of Human Rights to have him transferred to a hospice to die.

ONE last appeal to the ECHR to intervene was refused late on Friday, following a High Court ruling that he must remain in the Royal London hospital in Whitechapel, east London.

Archie, a talented gymnast and lover of mixed martial arts, had been in a coma since suffering a catastrophic brain injury on April 7. His mother, who had been at his bedside almost constantly ever since, believes it was because he choked while taking part in a viral social media challenge.

Paul Battersbee and Hollie Dance speak to the media outside the Royal London hospital in Whitechapel, east London
Paul Battersbee and Hollie Dance speak to the media outside the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London, on Tuesday. Photo: Jonathan Brady/PA

Doctors said Archie had died in the brain stem, but his parents wanted life support to continue.

Last month a High Court judge praised Archie for having “an infectious enthusiasm for life”, believed it was “futile” to continue treating him.

In an interview with Sky News recorded on Friday, Dance, from Southend-on-Sea, Essex, said the hospital had made it clear there were no more options and that life support would be withdrawn at 6pm. 10 on Saturdays.

Archie Battersbee
Archie Battersbee’s life support was turned off on Saturday Photo: Family Handout/PA

Dance said: “The last, however many weeks since April 7th, I don’t think there’s been a day that hasn’t been really horrible.”

“It’s been really hard,” she added. “Despite the tough, strong face and appearance openly in front of the cameras until now, I’ve been pretty devastated.”

Asked if there was anything more she could do, she said: “No. I have done everything I promised my little boy I would do. And I have done it.”

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Javed Iqbal

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