Tributes paid after lottery millionaire Melissa Ede dies
Tributes are being paid to flamboyant lottery millionaire Melissa Ede, who is reported to have died suddenly at the weekend.
The transgender LGBT campaigner and former taxi driver, from Hull, was already well-known for her off-the-wall online videos and appearances on daytime TV shows when she scooped £4 million on a scratchcard 18 months ago and proclaimed herself "Mel the millionaire".
Ms Ede, 58, is understood to have died suddenly on Saturday.
Her partner, paranormal investigator Rachel Nason, confirmed Ms Ede's death to Hull Live and posted a link to the news site's story about the tragedy on her own Facebook page.
Ms Nasen's post was immediately followed by scores of expressions of sympathy and shock.
At a press conference to celebrate her win in December 2017, Miss Ede said: "I'm not Melissa Ede the taxi driver any more, I'm Mel the millionaire.
"Just because I'm a rich bitch doesn't stop me being the crazy bitch I've always been."
Ms Ede vowed to continue with her media antics, which saw her post a range of unusual video clips about her life, and also appear on programmes like The Jeremy Kyle Show.
Early this month, Ms Ede posted a Facebook message to trolls after she was taken to hospital with a suspected heart attack, but was later given the all-clear.
She said: "First, people say it's a shame I'm not dead.
"I've got a message for you people.
"There's nothing wrong with with this ticker or my lungs. All been checked out.
"So you've got me for quite a while, yet.
"I'm sure that'll make you all happy."
In December 2017, Ms Ede explained how she went into a garage in Hull to buy fuel with £20, after spending £8.91 on diesel, she could not decide whether to buy cigarettes or the £10 National Lottery Blue Scratchcard.
"Something was telling me to buy that scratchcard," she said.
She said that, after realising she had won, "I got back out of my car, I ran into the garage, I just went: 'Oh my god you will not believe this, you've just handed me £4 million'."
Ms Ede described how she worked up to 15 hours a day in her rented Ford Mondeo taxi to make ends meet and lived in one room in a shared house.
She said at the time: "The transgender fight to where I am now has been a difficult path.
"I received my operation almost seven years ago and I am really proud of who I am today.
"What a fairytale ending.
"It is all just like a dream."