Dimbulah resident Elyse Miller-Kennedy passed away yesterday afternoon after she was critically injured in a car crash. The 19 year had her family by her side, after she was transferred to Townsville Hospital for specialist treatment last weekend.
The year 12 student and Miss World 2016 contestant had been left with critical head and chest injuries after her car was hit head-on near her home town of Dimbulah, north of Cairns on Wednesday August 3. It is believed that the other car was travelling on the wrong side of the road, with one of the two French occupants also hospitalised with leg injuries.
Family friend Katrina Porter delivered the news on behalf on the family on the fundraising campaign page she has set up to help support the family.
“We are absolutely devastated to announce ‘Elyse Miller-Kennedy’ passed away yesterday afternoon at Townsville Hospital Intensive Care Unit, surrounded by beloved family and friends after losing her week long battle to live after a tragic head on collision on Wednesday 3rd August 2016.”
The community of Dimbulah has well and truly rallied behind the family at this difficult time, even running their lime-farm on the Atherton Tableland in their absence.
“The support the community has shown has been absolutely resounding, thousands of messages and well wishes not only from locals, but globally. There have been friends, neighbours and strangers helping where ever they can, businesses have been fundraising and the prayers of the faithful are echoing from afar.”
She said family was overwhelmed by the support they had received and singled out those who had donated to the fundraising page and shared the news via social media.
“Elyse’s family is absolutely humbled and by the publics generosity and have no words to explain their astonishment and gratitude. Also thanks to all medical staff, police and rescue services involved.”
The beloved local had recently competed in the Miss World Australia Finals pageant in Melbourne in late July and was well known in the tight-knit farming community of Dimbulah.
The pageant’s fundraising partner Variety Australia posted this tribute on Facebook.
The family has asked that everyone “remember Elyse’s inner beauty, the warmth she showed to all, her humbleness during her journey throughout her larger than life experiences and of course the generous sweet soul and friend she was to so many.”
They have also thanked the community for giving them “the respect and privacy they need to mourn the loss of their little girl.”