Messages of love for tragic Sheffield schoolgirl

Tributes left by pupils at Notre Dame High School on a prayer wall dedicated to fellow pupil Gabi Smith, who died aged 12, after a suspected seizure while taking a bath.
Tributes left by pupils at Notre Dame High School on a prayer wall dedicated to fellow pupil Gabi Smith, who died aged 12, after a suspected seizure while taking a bath.
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POIGNANT messages of love and sympathy have been dedicated to Gabi Smith by heartbroken friends after the 12-year-old died in a tragic drowning accident in her bath.

It is believed Gabi, of Ecclesall, suffered a seizure, fell unconscious and slipped under the water as she took a bath on Saturday morning.

Gabrielle Smith, of Ecclesall, who died  after a suspected seizure in the bath at her home.

Gabrielle Smith, of Ecclesall, who died after a suspected seizure in the bath at her home.

The alarm was raised by Gabi’s best friend, 10-year-old Rebekah Walton, who had been on a sleepover.

Gabi’s mum Faye Smith broke down the bathroom door and attempted resuscitation while son Zach, 16, dialled 999.

But Gabi, described by her family as ‘the light of our lives, beautiful inside and out’, was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

Pupils at Notre Dame High School in Ranmoor have been left devastated by the tragedy.

Students have now created a ‘prayer wall’ in memory and thanks for the life of Gabi as they visited the school’s prayer room.

“Many students have visited the room and it is uplifting to see the many prayers, memories and reflection,” said headteacher Jane Willis.

“It was clear to see that although Gabrielle had only been at Notre Dame since September, she was a valued and loved member of our school community.”

Gabi moved up to the school from Ecclesall Juniors C of E in September last year.

Mrs Willis described her as ‘a lively and friendly, thoughtful and generous student, a true all rounder’.

“She was academically bright and loved science, history and playing the guitar. She achieved many certificates including Student of the Week,” said Mrs Willis.

“Her last certificate, awarded just last Friday, was for her Science project, entitled ‘Best Pigeon Homework Ever!’.”

Mrs Willis added: “She will be missed by everyone in school and our thoughts and our prayers are with her and her family.”

n See Fair Point: page 34.