Baby dies after parents’ hunt for stolen phone
An 11-month-old Melbourne girl has died just days after her heartbroken parents pleaded for help from the public to locate a stolen mobile phone containing photos of their dying daughter.
The father of baby Amiyah Windross, Jay, posted an emotional tribute to Facebook on Wednesday afternoon sharing "with utter sadness" the loss of his child.
"Amiyah's last hours were spent peacefully and calmly, cuddling in Mummy's and Daddy's arms," he said.
"Amiyah battled hard and fought an undiagnosed neurological issue from the day she was born.
"Her strength, her courage, and her unrelenting fight was on display from her first breath, all the way till her last."
The sad news comes days after the desperate search for an irreplaceable phone belonging to Amiyah's parents.
Jay and Dee Windross' phone, full of precious photographs and videos of little Amiyah, was left in the toilets next to Target at Chadstone Shopping Centre last Saturday about 5.30pm.
The parents, who live in Boronia, have begged anyone with information about a Samsung Galaxy S8 phone, with a purple cover, to come forward so they can reclaim the content on it, no questions asked, The Herald Sun reports.
In several desperate social media posts, the couple pleaded with the public to help them retrieve their phone as they keep a bedside vigil for their now deceased daughter, Amiyah.
Dee posted on Sunday afternoon the phone had yet to be recovered despite many posts claiming it had been found.
"I have not had my phone handed back and am still looking for it and the memories it holds," she wrote.
"We have also tried multiple ways of back ups to retrieve the photos, none have worked."
The grieving parents asked people to contact them directly, leave the phone at the front desk of the Monash Children's Hospital - where their daughter is in intensive care - or leave it at a help desk at Chadstone.
The couple have taken every measure to try and find the phone, even contacting Victoria Police.
"Someone has it or knows who took it. Please return it, absolutely no questions asked," Dee pleaded.
Amiyah had been in and out of intensive care since she was born, and the phone contains most of the images the couple have of their beloved daughter.
The couple believes the phone was stolen from the toilets after Dee left it there by accident on Saturday afternoon.
"All the photos of (Amiyah) during the day, doing things, it's all on Dee's phone," Jay told the Herald Sun.
"We can get another phone, but it is not about that. It's all about the photos.
"We beg you as grieving parents not to wipe the phone."
The devastated parents said all they wanted to do was "recover what's on the phone."
Jay said doctors noticed there was something not quite right with their baby girl "within hours of her being born".
"She spent her first week of life in special care," he said.
"She's about 330 days old, and she has spent nearly 200 of those in hospital".
In a Facebook post, Jay said he understood whoever took the phone may have needed a new one or wanted to sell it for money.
"But please understand that this means more than money to us," he wrote.
"If it's money you need, we will gladly offer you a cash reward for the return of the phone. No questions asked. No grudge held."
The grieving father even offered to meet with the person secretly to get the photos of his beloved daughter.
"If you want the phone, we're more than happy to arrange to meet. We'll copy the photos off the phone, and you can keep the phone," he said.
"What is on the phone is worth more than anything in our life."
This article originally appeared on the Herald Sun and was reproduced with permission