She had been suffering from pneumonia since May. Her grandmother, Beryl Rimmer, who had visited Vicky every day, was said to be "devastated" by her death yesterday. She and Vicky's relatives have insisted that the illness must have been caused by eating BSE-infected food such as hamburgers in the 1980s.
A post-mortem examination was being carried out yesterday on a former kennel worker who may have been one of the youngest victims of "new variant" Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (v-CJD), caused by mad cow disease. Vicky Rimmer, 20, had been in a coma for four years at Deeside Community Hospital in North Wales after originally falling ill aged 15.