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Mother Dies Suddenly in Her Sleep in Front of Her Kids During Flight From Hong Kong to UK


A mother tragically died suddenly in her sleep on Friday during a long flight from Hong Kong to the UK, leaving her family “traumatized.”

According to Mirror, “mum and midwife Helen Rhodes was travelling with her family as part of a “new adventure” returning home after spending 15 years living in Hong Kong.”

“A few hours in, Helen was found unresponsive and couldn’t be resuscitated after passing away in her sleep.”

Mirror provided further details:

Tragically, for the remaining eight hours of the flight, Helen’s broken children sat next to their mum in a “breathless sleep” until they landed in Frankfurt, a friend of the family wrote.

Though it was an “extremely traumatising” experience, the “devastated” family had the opportunity to say their last goodbyes while sitting beside her.

When they arrived Helen’s body stayed in the German city while her husband and kids continued on to the UK, leaving behind the “glue that held the family together”.

Jayne Jeje, who set up a fundraiser to help the grieving family, explained how Helen was feeling before her final flight.

She said: “Helen and her family wrapped up a life in Hong Kong of over 15 years to embark on a new chapter living back home in the UK.

“Helen was excited and nervous about the move, but looked forward to seeing her family back home, as she had not seen her family or ageing parents since the pandemic began.

The cause of her death remains unknown.

A GoFundMe page has been started to raise funds for the family.

Below is the statement from the fundraising page:

We are still in disbelief and shock about the sudden passing of our dearest friend Helen Rhodes, whose life has touched many people in Hong Kong and the UK.
On August 5, 2022. Helen passed away in her sleep on her flight from HK to UK. Helen was found unresponsive a few hours into the flight. Despite all efforts, Helen was not able to be resuscitated. This all unfolded in front of her children. For the remaining 8 hours of the flight, Helen lay in a breathless sleep in her seat. Although this was extremely traumatizing to the family, they all had time to say what they needed to say to her. Needless to mention, they are devastated. This loss is unimaginable. Helen was a devoted wife and mother. She was the glue that held her family together. After landing in Germany and the protocol that followed, Helen remained in Frankfurt while her husband (Simon) and two young children (Nathan and Emma) had to go on to the UK without her.
Helen and her family wrapped up a life in Hong Kong of over 15 years to embark on a new chapter living back home in the UK. Helen was excited and nervous about the move, but looked forward to seeing her family back home, as she had not seen her family or aging parents since the pandemic began. Sadly , she never got to see them again.
Helen was one of a kind, a gem. She was a midwife by profession, and was always willing to lend a helping hand or advice to anyone who needed it. Helen loved to talk and made friends easily. She was the pulse of her community in Tung Chung, in Hong Kong. She couldn’t walk a few feet and not run into someone she knew by name. She was an early member of a tight knit diverse group, called Tung Chung Mums. Over 200 women who first looked to her if they had a question concerning anything medical related. Helen always made herself available to help others. She was clever, witty and generous with her time.
Helen was sharp and creative. She ran her own business making amazing bespoke bows and accessories. Helen took pride in everything she did, and her bows were exquisite. This fundraiser is to honor this lovely woman who was loved by so many, a dear friend who touched so many people. We can only hope she knew how much she meant to us., and how her void can never be filled. How this loss is so painful and surreal. The grief we feel is paralyzing. Yet, we feel lucky to have known her.
Our hope by creating this fund as a gesture in making sure her family doesn’t have to let unexpected expenses add to what they are already going through. To honor our dear friend Helen, who we will never forget. So please , if you can help us reach this goal. Give what you can and share with others.
The purposes of this fundraiser are:
– Help with any unexpected expenses for Helen’s Funeral
– Help fund support for the children as Helen’s husband, Simon, will need time grappling with the new normal and the lost of his partner and wife.
– Create a legacy in honour of Helen so that her loved ones will feel how much she was loved and appreciated by many who were blessed with her kindness, friendship and generous help. Allow those that cared about Helen to contribute in anyway they wish.
All proceeds from this fund with go directly to Helen’s husband Simon and their children Nathan and Emma.


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