The heartbroken family of a six-year-old boy who died of a stroke have spoken of their devastation at facing Christmas without him.

Little Caleb Forrest passed away last Tuesday in Glasgow’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children after suddenly taking ill.

Speaking through tears his devastated parents Courtney and Kerran, both 24, said the Elderbank schoolboy’s death saved the lives of three other people after his organs were donated.

Courtney, of Parkside, Bourtreehill, told the Times: “We are absolutely heartbroken to face Christmas without Caleb, but we can take comfort knowing that three other families will have had the best possible Christmas present, thanks to our wee boy. We are so proud of him.”

Caleb first took ill last we ekend and suddenly became lethargic and sleepy. Sensing something was not right, Courtney took him to hospital.

She said: “They tested his saturation levels and they were unbelievably low so they put him on oxygen. He wasn’t improving so he was transferred to Glasgow.

“They were trying to give his body a rest so he was hooked up to machines which were doing everything for him.

“He was struggling all day Monday but by Tuesday morning they said he had improved and they turned his oxygen down.”

Seeing Caleb had improved Courtney quickly went to grab something to eat. When she returned, Caleb had suffered a massive stoke and died.

She said: “He was stable so I nipped out to get something to eat. When I came back the doctors took me into a side room and said he’d had a blood clot on his lungs which had caused him to suffer a stroke at 2pm and he was gone.

“I didn’t believe them. I just thought there is no way. I went in to see him immediately and he just looked so peaceful but there was nothing in his eyes anymore. The life was gone from them.”

From the day he was born Caleb had shown his strength, having surgery on his stomach at just one day old to repair a blockage in his bowel.

The plucky youngster was also born with atrioventricular septal defect (AVSD) in his heart – a rare condition where there are holes in both chambers – and had further surgery to correct it.

Despite her devastation, Courtney feels “blessed” to have had him for six years.

She said: “There have been a few times in Caleb’s life when we thought we were going to lose him and he just proved everyone wrong and bounced back.

“When he was born and the doctors told me he had Down’s Syndrome people were telling me he wouldn’t be able to do certain things, but he proved them wrong too. He was just amazing.”

“He was just a happy wee boy. He could be funny, sarcastic, grumpy. He hated any physical activity. But he loved his wee sister Keira and was delighted when he became a big br other, although she ended up being the protective one.

“She knows her brother has gone to heaven now. It’s hard to explain but she has some understanding.”

Courtney says Caleb was thriving when he started school in August and was well loved by his teachers and fellow pupils. She says despite their devastating loss, the family is determined to make Christmas as magical as possible in Caleb’s memory.

She said: “There are times I just don’t want to get up in the morning but I have a wee girl who needs me too. We are going to see Santa and do everything we can to make it magical. I think Caleb would be disappointed if we didn’t.”

Caleb’s funeral is in the Life Church in Broomlands at 12.30pm on Wednesday, December 19, before a service in Largs Crematorium at 2pm.