HUNDREDS of mourners turned out to celebrate the life of Caroline Howarth in a ceremony at Cwmbran’s Victory Church yesterday.
Around 500 people turned out to say goodbye to the “wonderful woman” who tragically died aged 24 just days after giving birth to her first child, Hallie-Rose, without ever seeing her new baby.
The sun shone as guests, dressed colourfully to pay tribute to Caroline, arrived at about midday at the church where the couple got married and attended services regularly.
Guests shared brave smiles as they were shown a photo montage Mrs Howarth’s life while the Ellie Goulding track How Long Will I Love You played.
During the service, led by Pastor Richard Taylor, friends and family sang a new version of Amazing Grace by Chris Tomlin, and heard tributes by friends and family, who said that she was determined to live life to the full.
In one tribute it was said that Mrs Howarth was a “really genuine person who cared for others... She loved to dress up and she always knew where to find a bargain.
“She was a true friend – heaven has been given a priceless treasure”.
Wearing a white suit, her husband, Lee Howarth, who is now caring for his daughter Hallie-Rose at home, bravely got up to sing his wedding song – a combination of The Heart Of Worship and Waiting Here For You, two of Mrs Howarth’s favourite songs, to rapturous applause.
During his sermon Pastor Richard Taylor paid tribute to Mrs Howarth calling her “someone so young and beautiful”.
On leaving, guests were invited to make donations to the Royal Gwent Hospital and the Bristol Royal Infirmary instead of flowers.
The Argus reported how Mrs Howarth died after suffering an asthma attack coupled with a decreased level of oxygen in her blood, which caused her to go into cardiac arrest during an emergency caesarean section to deliver the baby.
Mrs Howarth gave birth to a healthy baby girl, named Hallie-Rose on May 8, but the new mum’s heart stopped for an extended amount of time in which she suffered loss of oxygen to the brain and she was placed on life support.
The family decided to allow her to pass away peacefully on May 10, just two days after the birth of her daughter. Four of her major organs were having to be supported by machines and it became apparent there would be lasting damage to the brain.
Since then tributes have continued to pour in for Mrs Howarth, and the Ivy Bush along with Caerleon Town AFC have started fundraising for the baby.
The Ivy Bush now plans to hold another fundraising night on June 21 called Caerleon Rocks For Caroline which will feature artists from Caerleon coming together to raise funds from 8pm onwards.
Meanwhile, fundraising continues on the Just Giving page ‘Donations in memory of Caroline Howarth’ set up by Caerleon Town AFC player Jonathan Tattershall, which has raised £560 towards its goal of £2,500.
To donate, visit gofundme.com/93mbw8