‘Her name is Willow Dunn’: Online vigil held in memory of four-year-old

May 28, 2020
Willow Dunn, pictured, was found dead by police on Monday. Source: GoFundMe.

An online vigil was held in memory of four-year-old Brisbane girl Willow Dunn last night, just days after her body was discovered by police at a rented property in the suburb of Cannon Hill.

Willow’s father Mark James Dunn, 43, was charged with murder on Monday evening and remains in custody. Queensland Police were called to the property in Bent Street at around 9.20am on May 25. A crime scene was immediately declared as investigations into the girl’s death commenced.

The virtual tribute was supported by Down Syndrome Australia, as Willow is understood to have had the condition, among several other disability advocacy organisations. It took place at 7pm on Wednesday evening, with supporters being urged to light a candle in memory of Willow and share an image of the flame online.

“We light a candle in your memory today precious girl. We will not forget you and we will seek justice for you,” Every Australian Counts wrote on Twitter.

While Down Syndrome Aus wrote: “We are so sorry for all that you endured during your short life. We are sorry that the adults who should have cared for you neglected and abused you. Our hearts are broken for all that has happened.”

Within minutes the hashtag ‘#hernameiswillow’ was trending on Twitter as people took part in the vigil. One person wrote: “Fly high little angle, the arms of our Lord are now wrapped around you.”

Another user wrote: “I pray for justice to be brought upon the people who let her down in her short life.” While another said: “God bless all the beautiful children with Down syndrome. Sleep peacefully little Willow.”

An online fundraising campaign has also been set up by well-wishers to help cover the cost of little Willow’s funeral. As of Thursday morning more than $4,500 had been raised, with people expressing their condolences to the youngster’s family.

“Little Willow Dunn passed away under horrific circumstances,” the GoFundMe campaign reads. “This beautiful little girl had a smile that was so bright. She deserves to be remembered and shown the love and compassion she so rightly deserves in her short life.  Sadly we never knew you beautiful girl and while we feel like we failed we won’t fail in saying goodbye to you the right way!”

Dunn’s case was briefly heard in Brisbane Magistrates Court on Tuesday. The case was adjourned and he is set to appear in the same court on July 20.

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