A 12-year-old U.K. girl died on New Year's Eve battling a mysterious illness that caused what doctors believe to be a series of mini strokes, her mother told the Lancashire Evening Post.

Alice Foster, 12, of Hesketh Bank, near Preston in the U.K., died at Derian House Children's Hospice in Chorley. The girl began experiencing mini strokes when she was "just a few years old" and never fully recovered, according to her mother Caroline.

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Alice suffered mobility problems and other difficulties. Doctors were amazed when she recovered following a stay in intensive care two years ago. Despite her illness, Alice remained a "happy and popular" girl throughout her short life, her mother said.