A BABY boy who died just weeks after being born was given a funeral escort of honour by a fleet of Ferrari cars after the community rallied round to help give him a special send-off.
Little Enzo Kyrillou, from Somerford, was named after the founder of Ferrari in memory of his nine-year old brother Ollie who died in 2016 and was mad about the famous sports car.
Enzo only lived for 14 weeks and his grief-stricken parents appealed on social media for help to mark his funeral – and remember his older brother – with a motor parade through Christchurch.
Their wish was answered when eight gleaming supercars followed Enzo’s tiny Ferrari-themed coffin as it was transported from his home and through the town on a “lap of honour” before arriving at Jumpers Road cemetery.
Enzo’s father Alex told the A&T: “It was absolutely wonderful to see and hear the roar of the cars. They looked so magnificent.
“Lots of people stopped in the street as we went past. I was really stunned to see so many Ferraris at one go. Enzo’s older brother Harry even got to ride in one of the Ferraris to the church.”
Alex had posted a message on social media asking Ferrari owners if they could help him achieve his dream of giving his baby boy a special send-off while simultaneously honouring Ollie.
Ollie died four years ago after being diagnosed with a glioblastoma, an aggressive brain tumour.
Alex said: “Ollie was mad about Ferraris. Once as we were leaving Southampton General Hospital where he was receiving treatment, we saw a Ferrari parked up outside.
“Ollie’s eyes lit up. He saw the beauty in everything, and he certainly saw it in that car.
“He was mesmerised by it. I took a photo of him beside it and he was so excited. From then on he would talk about them and watch videos of them. He loved the sheer speed and power of the car.
“We also brought him a couple of toy Ferraris.”
Ollie died in February 2016 leaving his parents Alex and Amy devastated. He had been diagnosed with the brain tumour in June 2015 after suffering severe headaches, earaches, a crooked neck and sickness.
He underwent an operation to remove a lemon-sized tumour from his brain followed by chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Ollie lost his fight for life after a brave struggle when brother Harry was only seven.
Last year Alex and Amy were delighted when she gave birth to Enzo on 14th September. Alex said: “He looked so much like Ollie.
“We were struggling with names then one day Amy said to me, ‘What about Enzo after the founder of Ferrari?’ It just seemed so right because Ollie had loved them so much.”
Enzo was a happy baby who seemed to be thriving. Then on 22nd December last year he was found unresponsive and not breathing in a cot at his auntie’s house where he had been staying the night.
Alex performed CPR on him and an ambulance crew managed to get Enzo breathing again. But at hospital his parents were given the devastating news that he had almost certainly suffered severe brain damage due to lack of oxygen.
Alex said: “We told the doctors we did not care how disabled he was as we both work with children and we felt that whatever problems Enzo might have, we would be able to cope.
“As you can imagine, having lost one son we could not bear the thought of losing another. But when Enzo was taken off sedation he didn’t wake up, instead he started to deteriorate.
“We could not bear to think of him suffering in anyway, so we took the decision to let him go. I held him in my arms for nearly three hours while he passed away.”
His parents have been told that Enzo was probably a victim of SIDs – sudden infant death syndrome – but they are awaiting further tests.
Planning Enzo’s funeral, Alex got the idea of a Ferrari escort which was something he would have loved to have done for Ollie.
He said: “We didn’t have the time to arrange it for Ollie, but he was given a send-off by superbikes which he loved as well.
“This time I wanted to honour both our sons so I put a message on several social media pages asking anyone with a Ferrari if they would provide an escort for Enzo’s funeral.
“At first the response was slow, but I thought, ‘I’m not going to let Enzo down’ so I posted more and more messages and suddenly the responses started flooding in.
“I was overwhelmed, the first was from a man called Richard who simply said, ‘I can help, when and where?’ I completely lost it and started crying.
“People have been absolutely fantastic. On the day they were thanking us for letting them be part of Enzo and Ollie’s day.”
He added: “It was such a huge comfort for me, Amy and Harry to see all those Ferraris there, knowing how much both the boys would have loved it.”
Alex is now appealing for anyone who might have photographed or taken video of the Ferrari escort as it passed through Christchurch to let him have copies.
He can be contacted through a GoFundMe page which was set up by a friend of the couple’s to help pay for Enzo’s funeral.
To donate visit bit.ly/2SlgFiE.