A FAMILY is saying farewell to their beloved baby girl who died at 21 months.
Grace Mai Hunter-Sapio was born with a rare heart defect that affects only one in 5,000 newborn babies.
She was born on September 3, 2013, to Dan Sapio and Cara Hunter, of Lloyd Road, Chichester.
Last year the family organised a charity darts match at Westleigh Park in Havant and raised almost £1,200 for the Ocean Ward at Southampton General Hospital, which was treating Grace at the time.
Dan, 27, originally from Havant, said: ‘Her heart had become far too weak and she felt it was time to go.
‘When she was at home it was laughs, fun and games. She bounced off her brother and he bounced off her.’
Dan praised the care she received at Southampton, as well as that of the Sussex Snowdrop Trust, providing care at home for children with life-threatening conditions.
‘Without them I think we would have cracked as a family a long time ago,’ he said.
‘Now we’re at home it doesn’t feel like home because in the end my home was the hospital.
‘That’s all I’ve known. I’ve become immune to my surroundings. I’m still struggling now.’
The funeral takes place on Monday at Chichester Crematorium.