Family grieve ‘bright shining star’ who died after snowboarding accident

Emily 'Mimi' Watts
Emily 'Mimi' Watts
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The grieving family of snowboarder Emily Watts had to accept the inevitable yesterday when doctors in France switched off her life-support machine.

They paid tribute to the fun-loving woman they called their “bright shining star.”

The 26-year-old - known by everyone as Mimi - never recovered consciousness after being trapped in a snow drift near the popular ski resort of Chamonix in the French Alps last weekend.

It took rescuers almost an hour to reach her and by that time the talented student had suffered a heart attack caused by oxygen starvation.

Doctors told her family from Lavenham that Mimi, who had a winter job in Chamonix, that she had little chance of recovering.

Her parents Nicky and Dominic, and brother Rory flew out to her hospital in Annecy on Sunday. They were with her when she died.

She had been offered a second university place next year and hoped to launch her own range of fashion clothes for winter sports.

Paying tribute to his talented sister, Rory said last night:”Mimi died peacefully and painlessly at 12:00 GMT today.

“The doctors informed us that she was slipping deeper in to a coma and there was nothing left that they could do for her.

“Mimi’s mother, father, stepmother, stepfather, step brother and I were at her bedside.

“We are all deeply saddened by what has happened, which was just an extremely unlucky sequence of events. However, we can find some comfort in the fact that all parties involved have been so helpful.

“We would like to thank the French mountain rescue team, police and hospital staff, as well as the British man who found her, the ski instructor who called for help and of course all of her wonderful friends.

“The world lost a bright shining star this week, but her memory will live on and continue to inspire us all.

“We will be starting a charity in her name called Good Story. It’s primary purpose will be to nurture creative talent by helping young people find funding and advice to start up their own businesses.”