A ‘dedicated’ mother of two has died suddenly on a plane in front of her children and husband.
Helen Rhodes returned home to the UK with her husband Simon and their two children Nathan and Emma on 5 August after living in Tung Chung, Hong Kong, for over 15 years.
After several hours of flying, Mrs. Rhodes was found unresponsive and unable to resuscitate after passing away in her sleep.
As a midwife in the profession, the ‘one-of-a-kind’ mother lay breathless in her chair for the rest of the flight’s eight hours until the plane landed in Frankfurt.
Ms. Rhodes’ body remains in Germany while her husband and two children must continue to the UK without her.
Helen Rhodes (right) returned home on August 5 with her husband Simon (left) and their two children Nathan and Emma after more than 15 years living in Tung Chung, Hong Kong.
A family friend wrote: The ‘deeply painful’ incident was unfolding before her eyes.
A GoFundMe page has been set up by Jayne Jeje to help the family with unexpected expenses and to ‘honor our dear friend, Helen’. To date, it has raised more than £10,000.
Ms Jeje described how the family was getting ready to ’embark on a new chapter’ and Mrs Rhodes ‘looks forward to’ seeing her elderly parents again, whom she has not seen since the start of the pandemic.
She wrote: ‘Helen and her family ended their life in Hong Kong over 15 years to start a new chapter while living in their home country in the UK.
‘Helen is excited and nervous about moving, but looks forward to seeing her family back home, as she hasn’t seen her family or elderly parents since the pandemic began. Sadly, she never got to see them again. ‘
She continued: ‘We remain in disbelief and shock at the sudden passing of our dearest friend Helen Rhodes, whose life has touched many in Hong Kong and the UK.
As a midwife in the profession, the ‘one-of-a-kind’ mother lay breathless in her chair for the rest of the flight’s eight hours until the plane landed in Frankfurt. Photo: Hong Kong
‘Helen is one of those gems. She is a midwife by profession, and is always happy to help or advise anyone in need.
‘Helen likes to talk and make friends easily. She is the heartbeat of her community in Tung Chung, Hong Kong.
‘She couldn’t walk a few feet and not clash with someone she knew by name. She was an early member of a closely intertwined diverse group, known as the Tung Chung Mums.
‘Over 200 women go to her for the first time if they have questions regarding anything medically related.
‘Helen is always ready to help others. She is smart, witty, and generous with her time.
‘Helen is very responsive and creative. She runs her own business, making custom bows and accessories. Helen takes pride in everything she does, and her bows are exquisite.
‘This fundraiser is to honor this lovely woman loved by many, a dear friend who has touched so many people. We can only hope she knows how much she means to us, and how her void can never be filled. How this loss is so painful and bizarre. The grief we feel is paralyzing. However, we feel fortunate to have known her. ‘