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Former Wigan and Leigh College student died from rare heart condition
Updated 10:57am Tuesday 26th February 2013 in News
A trainee teacher dubbed the ''perfect daughter'' died in her sleep aged just 19 - just days after she returned home from a summer holiday in Turkey with her best friend.
Pretty teenager Charlotte Mayes was thought to be perfectly healthy, didn't smoke was anti drugs and drank little alcohol yet enjoyed life not realising she had a rare heart condition.
She was found lifeless on her family sofa in front of the TV by her brother who assumed she had gone to bed.
Despite calling 999 and attempting to carry out heart resuscitation techniques - he knew it was too late and that his sister had passed away. In the run up to her death the only sign Charlotte might have a heart condition was a tendency to suffer bouts of tiredness.
An inquest was told Charlotte, from Hindley, and known as ''Lottie'' had decided to spread her wings after completing a childcare diploma course at Wigan and Leigh College.
She travelled to Turkey for a few months with her best friend named Nikita Lee after her initial University application was delayed due to a clerical error.
On arriving home she started university on September 24 and was studying a BA (Hons) Education with Information Technology at Liverpool Hope University which would lead to her becoming a primary teacher but she was found dead on September 29.
Sadly, her mother Michelle Roberts never got to see her bright daughter before she died as she was on holiday with her husband, Paul, who she married in 2001 after the death of Charlotte's father Ian in 1994.
"I returned home and was told that she had died a few hours earlier", she told coroner Alan Walsh, sitting at Bolton Coroner's Court.
Mrs Roberts said Charlotte was a healthy girl but she did become very lethargic in the year leading up to her unexpected death.
Mrs Roberts said: "She had been really, really tired, so she slept lots. I did tell her to go to the doctors, but she didn't. As soon as she came home, she would sleep on the sofa.
"We hadn't seen her - Charlotte was due back three days after we left for Egypt. She was still in Turkey and had been there since June. She went away with her friend Nikita. She did say about her sleeping lots, especially near the end of the holiday.
"I was really ill in Egypt that morning, as if I knew something bad had happened."
Deputy Coroner Walsh continued, reading from Mrs Robert's statement: "And your daughter didn't smoke, she was very anti-drugs and she was a light drinker. She was a perfect daughter."
The court heard Charlotte's brother Ian, had returned to the family address around 5.30am and Charlotte was still awake on the sofa.
His statement read: "When I went inside, Charlotte was sat up in the living room. She was watching television and the lap top was turned on."
Ian woke up at 12.30pm and went into check on his sister, but she wasn't in her bed.
"She was lay on the sofa. I could tell she wasn't breathing and her skin was a different colour. I phoned my brother then I called an ambulance. They told me to carry out CPR but I knew it was too late."
Charlotte was declared dead at 12.46pm that day. Dr Trisha Wahie, who carried out the post mortem, sent Charlotte's heart for a specialised examination to pathologist Dr Suvarna, because she could not see any abnormalities with the naked eye. It was confirmed the promising teen had died from a heart condition - hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
In evidence, Dr Wahie sad it was very possible she had died peacefully in her sleep. She added: "It may be a spontaneous mutation or run within families. They can have no symptoms at all. This would have been a sudden, unexpected death without any great suffering."
Recording a verdict of death by natural causes Mr Walsh said: "This is a very sad and tragic death due to natural causes. Charlotte was on the verge of studying to fulfil her ambition of becoming a teacher.
''She was, in every sense, a perfect daughter. She didn't smoke, she drank little and she engaged with her family. She was someone who you would be proud to call your daughter.
"Although she had suffered from tiredness, I'm sure it didn't stop her enjoying herself in turkey. At least, in that final stage she would have enjoyed her final time with her friend in Turkey.
"She was obviously a very well-liked person who intended to become a teacher. I believe that those children she would have taught will sadly miss the benefits of her knowledge and the benefits of her personality.
"She would have been a perfect example for those children."
The hearing was told since Charlotte's death, family members have been scanned for heart abnormalities, but they have had no irregular results.
In a message on Facebook Nikita said: ''I lost one of the most important things you will have in life and that was my best friend, the one who all my memories are with , she was the most beautiful, sweetest, fun, crazy, kind, forgiving, inspirational, cheerful girl you could ever meet.
''I love you so much Charlotte and I will never ever, ever, forget you, you are always in my heart. Sleep tight little princess. ''
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