The WA girl who melted hearts across Australia, sparking an outpouring of generosity with her brave cancer battle, has died.
Amelia “Milli” Lucas’ mother Monica Smirk took to Milli’s Facebook page today with the tragic news.
“Our hearts are broken,” she said.
“Our angel is now flying high and the world will never be the same.
“Baby girl, you were the full package: smart, funny, athletic, beautiful and could sing like an Angel.
“That’s why they took you early. You had all lessons completed.
“Your legacy will live forever, we will make sure of that.”
Milli, whose determination saw her dubbed WA’s “miracle girl”, was 14.
It was May, 2019 when an online call for help to fund critical brain surgery raised more than $90,000 in just two days, with generous Australians answering the family’s plea as Milli captured hearts around the country.
The Perth schoolgirl had been diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour, a Grade VI Glioblastoma, in 2016.
In all the family raised $170,000 for surgery with Sydney neurosurgeon Dr Charlie Teo, with the operation removing 98 per cent of the tumour.
However just last month, as Milli celebrated her 14th birthday, her family revealed “sadness” was coming.
“Happy birthday for our Milli,” Ms Smirk wrote on Facebook.
“I remember lying in bed with Grant [Milli’s Dad] when Milli was first diagnosed and said to him if we can get our girl to 14 then that would be an amazing feat.
“We should have been so ecstatic and happy that we got her here, but in the back of our minds we know the sadness that is coming.
“So hard to be happy, for both of us we tried and made sure she had an awesome day.”
Premier Mark McGowan was among the first to offer his condolences to her loved ones.
“Milli was a wonderful girl. Her loss is tragic for her family who loved her very much. It’s terribly sad,” Mr McGowan said.
“Milli won the hearts of every Western Australian.
“Her brave battle with cancer and her big, joyful smile will always be remembered.”
The Fremantle Football Club this evening also paid tribute to Milli, who was taken under the wing of superstar Nat Fyfe to share some unforgettable memories at the club.
It included a 2019 match where Milli tossed the coin with Fyfe and shared a cuddle with the Brownlow medallist.
“Milli, you stole the purple heart of every Fremantle player, staff member and supporter,” the Dockers tweeted.
“We are deeply saddened you are no longer with us…but you will always be FOREVER Freo.
“Our thoughts are with your family, especially Monica, Grant, Tess and Joel.”
Following delicate surgery with Dr Teo in June, 2019, Milli flew to Germany for a month of alternative treatment.
Her mother revealed Milli would receive low doses of chemotherapy combined with hyperthermia every day for four weeks before returning to Perth for a brain scan.
The family returned in July, 2019, and Milli eventually felt well enough to make a stunning return to school with her sister.
But in March last year the family was hit with the devastating news Milli’s tumour had returned and more surgery was on the cards.
By November a delicate mercy flight mission was arranged for the teenager so she could spend precious time with family and undergo further treatment at the Perth Children’s Hospital.