Farewell, Tin-yu: family, friends bid goodbye to Hong Kong girl who died after 4 years in vegetative state

Farewell, Tin-yu: family, friends bid goodbye to Hong Kong girl who died after 4 years in vegetative state

Family, friends and fellow residents have bid farewell to an eight-year-old Hong Kong girl who died in a vegetative state after a blood transfusion was delayed during an operation four years ago.

The family of Chau Tin-yu, who died on March 10, held a vigil for her on Saturday at the Diamond Hill Funeral Parlour, before her cremation the next day.

Her father, Eddie Chau, expressed gratitude to visitors who offered their condolences to his family, and said he would try to move on from the loss.

“It was so difficult for Tin-yu. Now it is a relief for her,” he said. “I believe this is our temporary farewell in this world. We will meet again in heaven someday.”

“I met many people today who I did not know before. I feel very touched and grateful,” he added.

Chau said that he still had not heard from the Hospital Authority or Queen Mary Hospital, and called on the authority to give an explanation.

“Although we reached a settlement with the Hospital Authority last year, but this … only means we cannot legally hold them liable,” he said.

“It does not mean that I have lost or given up my right to know about this matter,” he said. “I have the right to know the truth, and so do the public. I hope they will return justice to Tin-yu.”

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Eddie Chau, father of Tin-yu, has pressed health authorities for an explanation on his daughter’s death. Photo: Yik Yeung-man

Apart from the family and friends who attended the vigil, some residents also went to the funeral parlour to offer condolences on Saturday.

Among them is Amy Chau, who travelled from her home in Wong Tai Sin. Flowers in hands, the woman, who is in her 50s and works in retail, said she had closely followed Tin-yu’s condition although she did not know the family personally.

“Tin-yu was a good girl. Many people loved her,” she said.

She also urged the Hospital Authority to offer an explanation to the girl’s family as well as the public as soon as possible.

A father of two, who only gave his surname as Lok, also took his wife and daughter to show their support for Tin-yu’s family on Saturday.

“We hope the incident will be handled fairly,” he said.

Father confirms death of Hong Kong girl Chau Tin-yu who was in vegetative state

Tin-yu was four years old when she was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare type of cancer, and she had chemotherapy and radiotherapy which shrank the tumour to a size suitable for removal.

But during surgery at Queen Mary Hospital in Pok Fu Lam in May 2020, a blood transfusion was delayed by 48 minutes and her heart stopped beating for 52 minutes. She emerged from the operating theatre in a vegetative state.

The family launched a civil action against the Hospital Authority three years ago and the two sides reached a settlement in October.

Hong Kong girl Chau Tin-yu left in vegetative state 4 years ago dies

Barrister Albert Luk Wa-hung, who has assisted Chau in seeking a criminal investigation into the case, earlier said they were awaiting an update from the force after Chau gave officers a statement last October.

Luk said they had provided information to police in support of an allegation of medical malpractice and an allegation that Tin-yu’s medical records had been tampered with.

He said the girl’s death would not affect the investigation of the case.

Police earlier said the case had been referred to its Hong Kong Island regional crime unit for further investigation.

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