Coronavirus: Mum of UK's youngest victim forced to miss funeral due to self-isolation

Coronavirus: Mum of UK's youngest victim forced to miss funeral due to self-isolation

The funeral of the UK's youngest coronavirus victim went ahead without his mother and siblings after two of them developed symptoms.

Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab, 13, passed away in the early hours of Monday at King's College Hospital.

He was buried at Kemnal Park Cemetery in Chislehurst, south east London. on Friday by undertakers wearing protective equipment, as a small number of mourners watched on.

The Brixton schoolboy's immediate family members were not among them, however, as two of his siblings have developed symptoms of the COVID-19 disease and the household has been forced to self-isolate.

Because the coronavirus is so infectious, Ismail's family had also not been allowed to be with him when he died.

He passed away in hospital after being put on a ventilator and then into an induced coma, having been admitted after suffering breathing difficulties last Thursday.

The teenager, who had no known underlying health problems, tested positive for coronavirus the following day.

Following his death, his family said in a statement: "We are beyond devastated."

Donations have continued to pour in for a GoFundMe page set up to pay for Ismail's funeral and support his family, smashing the original £4,000 target and now standing at more than £72,000.

Many of the donations are in the hundreds of pounds, with one topping £3,495.

According to the page, set up by Madinah College, Ismail was the younger brother of one of the teachers there.

Organisers of the fundraiser have since posted a longer tribute from the family, describing Ismail as "gentle, kind" and with a "heartwarming" smile.

They thanked staff at the hospital for their efforts and for the money that has been raised, saying they were "extremely grateful and overwhelmed by the amount of support".

"We are all praying at this difficult time for all the people affected by this COVID-19 virus and we wish everybody a speedy recovery," they added.

"We also want to reiterate the need for people to listen to government guidance. COVID-19 is a virus attacking all members of our society, not just older people or those with pre-existing conditions.

"So please do everything you can to ensure that we adhere to social distancing; that people stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives."

Another 684 people in the UK were announced as having died after contracting coronavirus earlier on Friday, which brought the total number of deaths nationwide to 3,605.

The Department of Health said as of 9am on Friday, 38,168 people had tested positive.

Britons have been warned to stick to lockdown measures ahead of what is set to be a sunny weekend.