HEARTBROKEN relatives have paid tribute to a wife with 13 children who died from coronavirus.
Sonia Partridge, 35, died in the early hours of Tuesday morning in Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham – leaving her wife Kerry-Ann without the "backbone" of their family.
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Kerry-Ann, 40, paid tribute to her wife and their children's "dad" who said Sonia was "bullied for being so big", but "gave us all the confidence to not care what anyone thought".
She had two children of her own and Kerry-Ann had six, with their other five being from a sperm donor.
The 40-year-old, who is studying to be a midwife at university, said Sonia "loved everyone with a passion" and that looking after the youngest 11 of their children will be "so hard" without her.
She said their family "needs time" because they have been served an eviction notice by their landlords, and they have set up a fundraiser to cover Sonia's funeral costs and help them through the winter.
Kerry-Ann said: "I just walk into a room and expect to see her and she's not there.
"I'm watching the younger children running around like nothing has changed, and it's very hard to accept she's never going to see them grow up."
She said that Sonia, who had underlying health conditions, could only manage "one or two words" after she was rushed to University Hospital of North Tees on Friday.
Fighting back tears, she said: "She got too tired, and decided she would take the oxygen mask off and she went really quickly after that."
Meera Jo, 16, saw her mum in hospital before she died and said "there's never going to be enough words" to pay tribute to her.
She said: "It's left a massive hole in all our lives. It's hard telling the little ones she's gone away with the angels and she's not coming home.
"No matter how hard things were for her, she always put everyone else first, and now she's gone.
"We just feel numb, and other times we are just crying and can't stop crying.
"And when we laugh now, it feels wrong because she's not here to laugh with us."
Kerry-Ann said she, Meera and the other children, the youngest of whom is two years old, are coping with their loss by doing activities Sonia enjoyed.
She said: "We're doing the housework and getting the Christmas decorations out.
"Sonia loved Christmas, it was her favourite time of year. She put so much magic into everything she did.
"She was the homemaker, the foundation of our home.
"She did all the running around looking after the young ones, making sure the laundry was done, and being here for the kids when they wanted to hug her," she said.
"We just want people to know how amazing she was."
The family's fundraiser can be found here https://www.gofundme.com/f/beautiful-wife-and-dad-of-13-loses-battle-to-covid
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