A seemingly healthy 15-month-old girl died from meningitis just hours after her parents first noticed the killer bug’s classic rash.
Nick Bate and wife Ruth rushed their daughter Willow to hospital as soon as they saw blotches appear on her chest.
But within an hour, she was covered with a purple rash and doctors diagnosed her with meningococcal septicaemia.
Doctors at Medway Maritime Hospital in Kent said she was too sick to be transferred to a specialist unit at St Thomas’ Hospital in London.
The ‘happy, smiling’ little girl got weaker and weaker, her heart stopped three times and her family told she could be brain-damaged if she pulled through.
She died in the early hours of last Friday morning just hours after the rash was first spotted the day before.