The coronavirus is especially deadly for people over 80, but it’s been striking indiscriminately against people in all age groups.
When 16-year-old Julie was admitted to a hospital in Paris on Monday, she had severe breathing difficulties and was fighting for her life.
Now, the French schoolgirl with no underlying medical conditions has become the youngest person to die of coronavirus in Europe.
”No one is invincible”, Julie’s sister told Le Parisien.
Julie is the first minor to have died from COVID-19 in France. According to her sister Manon, she had no known illnesses beforehand.
Like many other countries in Europe, and indeed increasingly around the world, France has gone into official lockdown.
”We have to stop believing that this only affects the elderly. No one is invincible against this virus”, she told Le Parisien.
Soon after her death became public, tributes began to pour in for Julie.
The young girl was described as “bright and much loved” by her family, who said she “loved to dance, sing, and make people laugh”.
One of her classmates said Julie was “a very sociable, funny, kind, ambitious girl who was loved by everyone in high school.”
According to Parisien newspaper, Julie’s funeral will take place on Monday in her home town – with “only ten people maximum”.
Her school is planning a memorial ceremony in May, when it is scheduled to open again. On the program: A minute’s silence, as well as a white and red march. White for her good humor, red because it was Julie’s favourite color.
According to the sister, Julie’s symptoms were very mild at first. She just had a lighter cough before things progressed and took a turn for the worse.
”It got worse last weekend with mucus and on Monday we went to see a general practitioner. It was there that she was diagnosed with respiratory distress. She had no particular illnesses before this,” her sister said.
So sad ❤️This poor young girl had her whole life ahead of her.
My thoughts and prayers go out to her family and friends … R.I.P.