Home Office to review case of Jamaican grandmother refused entry to attend grandson’s funeral

PUBLISHED: 09:53 19 April 2019 | UPDATED: 09:55 19 April 2019

Damary Dawkins died last month aged 13. Pic: ACLT

Damary Dawkins died last month aged 13. Pic: ACLT


The Home Office is to review the case of a Jamaican grandmother who has been refused a visa to attend the funeral of her grandson from Dagenham.

Damary with his parents Nadine and Tony. PHOTO: ACLTDamary with his parents Nadine and Tony. PHOTO: ACLT

Ivy Powell, 67, wanted to fly to the UK to say her goodbyes to 13-year-old Damary Dawkins who lost his battle with leukaemia last month.

But her visa application was refused after the Home Office claimed she was unable to support herself financially despite her being retired.

However after the Post highlighted her plight the Home Office announced they would take a second look at her application.

A spokesman said: “We have reviewed this case in light of the compassionate circumstances and are attempting to make contact with Mrs Powell to discuss this further.”

Damary with his mother Nadine. Picture: ACLTDamary with his mother Nadine. Picture: ACLT

Damary had been diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in 2014 and, after undergoing chemotherapy, was told he needed a transplant.

However none of his family were a match so campaign #match4damary was launched by charity African Caribbean Leukaemia Trust (ACLT) to find a stem cell donor.

Sadly despite a match being found in the US and Damary undergoing the transplant he passed away six weeks after his 13th birthday.

The young footballer's plight hit the headlines after Manchester City star Raheem Sterling tweeted about it and visited Damary - part of the Crystal Palace elite development squad - in Great Ormond Street Hospital.

The England star paid a touching tribute to Damary after his death, lifting up his shirt to reveal a picture of the schoolboy after scoring his second goal during a 5-0 win over the Czech Republic last month.

Mrs Powell's daughter Nadine Damary said they made an application on April 4 which was rejected 12 days later.

She said: “We were going to support her, give her somewhere to stay

“They didn't take into account the reason for her application.

“She's coming to say goodbye to her grandson for the last time.”

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