JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Dad criticises media reports on sick daughter: inquest



"I don't want to lose my daughter, but if it's God's decision, who am I to fight against it?" 

That's what Trevor Stitt told a journalist two months before his 10-year-old daughter died from liver cancer in November 2009. 

Tamar Jemima Stitt was diagnosed with cancer in August 2009 and died in El Salvador after her parents fled Perth to treat her with natural remedies rather than chemotherapy. 

The West Australian coroner is investigating the circumstances surrounding the girl's death and whether she could have been saved with chemotherapy.

In a television report by Rahni Sadler that aired in October 2009 and was played to the inquest on Tuesday, Mr Stitt said he hoped the alternative treatment would work.

"I can't say I could imagine a world without her, I must realise that it might come about," he said.

Ms Sadler asked Tamar's mother, Arely, what she would say to people who thought she was "mad" for treating her daughter with natural therapies, including a clay wrap to remove toxins from Tamar's body and dandelion herbal tea.

"I would love for them to see Tamar once we go back to Australia when she's, you know, healthy, back to normal again," Ms Stitt said in the interview.

Mr Stitt, who is representing himself in the inquest proceedings, expressed frustration about the portrayal of his daughter's story in Ms Sadler's report.

He claimed footage of Tamar walking along a slope without losing her breath was not included in the report because it did not fit the journalist's story - a suggestion Ms Sadler denied.

He also questioned Ms Sadler about a part of her report that said San Salvador was one of the poorest and most violent cities in the world where 14 people were murdered every day.

She had reported that the family was staying in the middle of a gang area and she had been advised not to visit without a police escort. 

"I felt in danger in that area, yes," Ms Sadler told the inquest. 

She also said she was not informed that Tamar had died in November despite several attempts to make contact with the family. 

After Tamar's health worsened in October 2009, she began chemotherapy in El Salvador, but died three weeks later. 

Mr Stitt took a brief "comfort break" after Ms Sadler's evidence. 

The inquest continues.


HuffPost Australia

Follow Us

Featured advertisers