Little Charlie Gard, the terminally ill British child embroiled in a legal battle over his right to leave the United Kingdom, has died in hospice care according to public statement from the baby’s parents.
The eleven-month-old suffered from a rare genetic disease that rendered him unable to see, swallow, hear, or breathe without life-saving medical equipment.
Gard found himself at the center of a prolonged legal battle after European courts defied his parents’ wishes and ruled he should be taken off life support.
“Our beautiful little boy has gone, we are so proud of you Charlie,” said the boy’s mother.
His parents, Connie Yates and Chris Gard, fought a sustained legal battle to move Charlie to the United States or Italy to receive experimental treatment, but ultimately failed in their efforts.
Earlier this month, a specialist from Columbia University traveled to the UK to examine Little Charlie, but ultimately told the court the child would not benefit from the experimental therapy. He had initially told UK officials the boy had a 10% chance of improvement with the new treatment.
The case made international headlines on both sides of the Atlantic, garnering attention from President Donald Trump and Pope Francis, both of whom offered to help in any capacity.