Liverpool, England, Apr 27, 2018 / 23:07 pm
Ailing toddler Alfie Evans, whose plight has tugged at the world's heartstrings throughout the past week, died in the early hours of Saturday morning after being removed from life support.
In an April 28 Facebook post, Alfie's father, Tom Evans, said: "My gladiator lay down his shield and gained his wings at 02:30...absolutely heartbroken. I love you my guy."
Just shy of two years old, Alfie had been in what physicians described as a "semi-vegetative state" due to a mysterious degenerative neurological condition that doctors at Alder Hey Children's Hospital in Liverpool, England have not been able to properly diagnose. He had been hospitalized since December of 2016.
Although Italian officials earlier this week granted Alfie citizenship and a Vatican-linked hospital offered to take the toddler for further diagnosis and treatment, UK courts repeatedly refused to allow the transfer, ruling that it is not in the child's best interest.