The family of a British mother who was strangled and set alight by an intruder while she lay in bed in Barbados say they are “in a state of shock”.
Natalie Crichlow, 44, was attacked in her disabled brother’s home in Christ Church on 28 July. She was visiting the country to help care for him.
The Luton-born mother of three, who had twice survived cancer and had two strokes in the past decade, died in hospital on 6 August after suffering 75% burns to her body.
Her niece Ashley Best said: “The intruder broke in the house, then strangled her and then set her alight.
“I do not understand why it happened and we are all in a state of shock.
“She went into hospital and died of her injuries.
“For someone who had battled through so much to just be taken in this way and lose their life is just beyond understanding.
“She said she wanted to live life to the fullest because her life had nearly been taken from her.”
No arrests have been made, according to the Royal Barbados Police Force.
Local media outlet Stabroek News said police are looking for a man who “barged into a house, choked a woman, doused her with a flammable substance and then set the house on fire”.
Ms Crichlow has three children aged 10, 20 and 26 years old, who are “devastated” and want to bring her body back to the UK to be buried.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help raise funds for her repatriation.
Ms Crichlow lived as an openly gay woman and had worked in various jobs including as a make-up artist and door staff.
Family friend Mitra Wikes said the mother was a “true warrior and survivor who endured so much in life” but had a “true passion for living life to the max”.
Ms Wikes said Ms Crichlow had regularly visited her brother in Barbados after the death of her mother and uncle earlier this year.
A Foreign Office spokesperson said: “Our staff are supporting the family of a British woman following her death in Barbados, and are in contact with the Barbados police force.”