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Hundreds gather for today's funeral of Newark toddler Louisiana-Brooke Dolan who died in caravan fire at Ingoldmells



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You weren't able to love Louisiana for long while she was here, but you gave her enough love for a whole lifetime.

Those words were said to a heartbroken mum by a vicar at the funeral service of her toddler daughter today (Monday).

An emotionally-charged celebration of the life of Louisiana-Brooke Dolan, the two-year-old who perished in a caravan fire while on holiday in Ingoldmells, heard heaven had gained an angel in the tot with candy floss hair.

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Louisiana-Brooke's tiny coffin, pink and adorned with Peppa the pig, was carried to Newark Parish Church for this morning's service by horse-drawn hearse.

Family and friends had walked behind the carriage from the family home on Lincoln Road and motorcycle outriders led the procession.

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Hundreds of mourners followed the coffin into church where there was scarcely an empty seat. Around 100 well-wishers, many of whom had no connection to the family waited outside.

The service began with Somewhere Over The Rainbow by Eva Cassidy, then followed the welcoming prayer and a Bible reading from St Mathew and one of Louisiana-Brooke's favourite songs, Goosebumps by Travis Scott, and the distraught sobs of many were audible.

A slideshow of pictures and videos taken by the family during Louisiana's tragically short life was then shown, with her antics drawing laughter on occasion, such as she tried to lick her baby food from a spoon and smothered her face with it much to her obvious enjoyment.

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The vicar said that mourners were there to remember the short life of Louisiana-Brooke, to share in grief and to commend 'Wee Wee' to the eternal care of God.

"For the dreams that were dreamed and the plans that were there to be planned," said the priest. "And to seek the courage to face life without her."

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Then Louisiana's mother Natasha Broadley, who escaped the blaze with Louisiana-Brooke's three siblings, gave the eulogy — a poem that she had written in which she described Louisiana-Brooke as "the smallest of my babies, my beautiful tiny tot."

Natasha described how Louisiana-Brooke had been born into the world two weeks early, of how she had stroked her until she fell asleep, her times to keep. She spoke of her candy floss hair, cute button nose, sweetest dimples.

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She said that her heart had been shattered and that her life would never be the same.

She implored God to stroke her beautiful face and wrap his loving arms around her.

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As she finished, brave Natasha broke down and her tears were met with spontaneous applause for the congregation.

The vicar said that the sorrow that Natasha had, now so deep, reflected the love that she had for her child and while it was a time of great sadness, it was also a time to smile at the memories.

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"You told us of that last day at the seaside — even in such a short life, so many memories," the vicar said.

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The Advertiser was invited to Louisiana-Brooke's funeral by her loving family.

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