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Alison Lapper says late son Parys was bullied about her disability

19-year-old described as a ‘mischievous, generous, kind, loving, frustrating, cheeky, forgiving, beautiful boy’

Andy Gregory
Sunday 01 September 2019 20:06 BST
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British artist Alison Lapper attends a news conference with her son Parys on April 24, 2006
British artist Alison Lapper attends a news conference with her son Parys on April 24, 2006 (Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

The artist Alison Lapper has said her late son was bullied by his schoolmates about her disability.

Parys Lapper was 19 years old when he was found dead in a Worthing hotel in July. His mother cremated him on Thursday, and was told by police he may have died of an overdose.

Ms Lapper and her son Parys’ relationship first entered the spotlight after she posed naked while eight months pregnant with him for a Marc Quinn statue. It stood in Trafalgar Square for two years.

The artist, who has no arms and shortened legs after being born with the rare condition phocomelia, told the Sunday Times that her son had suffered cruel taunts from his peers at school.

While his time at primary school had been a happy affair, Ms Lapper said that by the age of 13, Parys began to ask her not to attend parents’ evening.

She realised when they turned up at his school together, they “were the show”, she told the paper.

“The next day Parys would go in and they would rip pieces out of him,” Ms Lapper said. “I could see how anxious he was.”

Parys’ funeral was held on Thursday. Ms Lapper’s fiance Si Clift described him on Facebook as a “mischievous, generous, kind, loving, frustrating, cheeky, forgiving, beautiful boy”.

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