As parents we recognised that Joe was not unique, there are many
children who have multiple medical complicated illnesses which we witnessed
so many times and every child with medical conditions will continue
to inspire and change text books.
What Joe did give us with all his problems was two more years than
any medical text book gave him. We enjoyed and will cherish every minute.
BALLOONS FILL SKY IN TOUCHING FAREWELL TO 'MIRACLE BOY' JOE
09:00 - 21 May 2008
filled the sky above St Mawgan during a touching farewell to a four-year-old
boy whose life and happy spirits "confounded the textbooks".
Joe Way, who was born with a rare genetic condition, was labelled
a 'miracle boy' after surviving meningitis, a potentially deadly skin
reaction, and numerous superbugs. He died two weeks ago today, took
out the word howeverafter a rapid deterioration in health.
Nearly 200 people packed in to the St Mawgan Church on Friday for
a service to say goodbye to Joe, who was known for his smile and his
Among the congregation were Joe's parents, 37-year-old Matt and 34-year-old
Claire Way, his six-year-old sister, Megan, and two-month-old brother,
Speaking during the service, Mr Way told of his son's resilience
and happiness in the face of all his health problems.
"Joe always had a smile on his face, that was the way he dealt with
it," he said.
"Joe made the worst of times the best of times. He had a smile that
could catch you and so many people were touched by him, even if they
spent one day, a couple of hours, or a few years with him.
"We are very privileged to have been his parents and we will always
love him. We thank Joe for being the best little man that he could be."
The service featured hymns, prayers, the lighting of candles and
a slideshow of pictures of Joe during his short life.
The Rev Chris McQuillen-Wright paid tribute to Joe's fighting spirit.
He said: "Joe was unique. He confounded all the textbooks. He always
did the total opposite to what the textbooks said he should do.
"He gave each and every one of us his smile. He's not the type of
boy we need to try to remember, he is simply the kind of boy we will
At the end of the ceremony, the congregation were given balloons
and cards for people to send their personal messages for Joe - an idea
thought up by his sister, Megan.
The service then spilled outside on to the streets of St Mawgan,
as about 150 of the balloons were released - climbing skyward in the
Sunflower seeds were also handed out so people could plant them in
memory of Joe, to remind people of his bright and inspirational spirit.
The family then went on to a private interment. A reception at the
Bedruthan Steps Hotel followed. Fund-raising for the Cornwall Precious
Lives Appeal to build a children's hospice in the county is still ongoing
in Joe's name.
Anyone wanting to make a donation can call Andrew Henwood funeral
directors on 01637 851199 or send a cheque with Joe's name on the back
to 74 Edgcumbe Avenue, Newquay, TR7 2NN.
Those who want to donate direct to the Precious Lives Appeal can
Click here to donate
Daniel Williams Community Editor Newquay Guardian