Tribute to student who was 'a shining star'

PUBLISHED: 12:27 13 January 2009 | UPDATED: 15:57 11 May 2010

THOMASIN PURBROOK

THOMASIN PURBROOK

FRIENDS have paid tribute to a student who died after contracting a blood infection during a school trip to Russia. Thomasin Purbrook, 18, of High Street, Melbourn, died in hospital in St Petersburg after suffering from meningococcal septicaemia. Her fun

FRIENDS have paid tribute to a student who died after contracting a blood infection during a school trip to Russia.

Thomasin Purbrook, 18, of High Street, Melbourn, died in hospital in St Petersburg after suffering from meningococcal septicaemia.

Her funeral service took place last weekend in the chapel at the Oundle School, near Peterborough, where she was a pupil.

Tributes to the student, known to her friends as Thommy, have been pouring in via an appreciation group set up on social networking site Facebook.

One reads: "She was the funniest person I've ever met, I'll remember her forever".

Another says: "Thommy you were amazing, the best head of house, no doubt about it."

Thommy's parents flew out to Russia to be with her in hospital after she was taken ill, and she died on Sunday, December 21.

Her father, Clive Purbrook, is a Melbourn parish councillor.

She had one brother, Barney, who left the school in 2007.

The upper-sixth student was head of her house, and was a prominent member of the school's girls' hockey and rugby teams.

She was applying to read history at university, and had recently been interviewed at Cambridge.

Her housemaster, David Turner, described Thommy as a "truly exceptional young woman".

He said: "She could not fail to catch your attention with her room-filling character.

"She was a charmingly uncompromising personality, who we believed was a shining example to the younger members of the house, and its natural leader.

"We are frequently told that this generation lacks positive role models;

"Thommy was proof that this cliché is a myth. The school will miss her beyond measure."

Oundle School headmaster Charles Bush said: "We will remember Thommy for her wonderful zest for life, her smile, and enthusiasm for all things, and the radiance of her personality.

"She was a shining star, the finest leader, and an example of the best for all.

"She made our lives better by her presence.

"Our deepest sympathy and prayers are with Mr and Mrs Purbrook and their son Barney.

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