Coleen Rooney has paid a poignant tribute to her beloved sister Rosie on what would have been her 20th birthday. The pregnant star took to her Instagram account on Friday to share a black-and-white photo of Rosie, accompanied with the words: "Happy 20th Birthday to Our Angel." Fans were quick to send their support to Coleen and her family on the emotional day, with one writing: "You must miss her so much," while another said: "Beautiful, thinking of you all." A third added: "Happy birthday to a very special, beautiful lady."
Rosie passed away in 2013, just one month before her 15th birthday. She suffered from Rett syndrome – a rare brain disorder which causes severe disabilities. On the fifth anniversary of her death in January, Coleen shared a photo of the name 'Rosie' lit up with lights on her Twitter account, which she captioned with a love heart emoji.
Coleen Rooney marked her later sister Rosie's birthday with a poignant tribute
Coleen's parents Tony and Colette McLoughlin adopted Rosie as a baby. In a statement at the time of her death, the family said: "Rosie was just 14-years-old and fought a lifelong battle with Rett syndrome. Throughout her life she brought so much love and happiness to all our family and everyone who knew and met her. She was such a strong little girl and an inspiration to us all. We shall cherish for ever the memories we have shared and the love she showed us each and every day of her life. As a family we are heartbroken but we are blessed to have had her in our lives."
Rosie was adopted by Coleen's parents as a baby
Coleen opened up about Rosie's condition in an interview with the Mail in 2006. She spoke of how as a baby, Rosie had difficulties crawling and swallowing her food over time, and that it took a year for her little sister to be diagnosed. She touchingly added that Rosie "can't talk to us but you can tell when she's happy – she laughs and giggles and her eyes sparkle".