Mums unite in charity tribute

Emma McElhinney and Lisa Turner and (below) Grace Turner and (bottom) Callum Towne.
Emma McElhinney and Lisa Turner and (below) Grace Turner and (bottom) Callum Towne.
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TWO mothers who tragically lost their children to illness are uniting to raise money in their memories.

Lisa Turner, 39, from Hambleton and Emma McElhinney, of Fleetwood, will take on the Hambleton Fun Run as part of a series of fundraisers this year.

Grace Turner

Grace Turner

Lisa lost her daughter Grace, who was born with Retts Syndrome, a rare neurological development disorder, on Christmas Eve 2010. She was six years old.

She will do the run, which her little girl – known as Amazing Grace – took part in before her death, to raise money for Brian House Children’s Hospice.

She said: “There will be around 100 of us, though I think we will walk the course. It is a special event for us because Grace took part in 2007.

“The money we raise will go towards the Amazing Grace Fund set up in memory of Grace and to support Brian House which cared for her for such a long time. Last year we had a target to reach £19,000, we hit £26,500.

Callum Towne

Callum Towne

“I was so happy, we couldn’t believe it, but the charity needs constant support to continue providing the fantastic service.

“We are now working closely with the hospice to raise money for the bereavement service and provide precious memory boxes for families going through what we went through.

“It means the hospice can offer a D.R.E.A.M (dream and remember every angel’s memories) box which will include things like silver finger and thumb print jewellery and blankets called ‘hugs from heaven’.

“When Grace died the thing which hit me the most was all I had of her was all I would ever have, I found out later about the fingerprint jewellery and I was sad I hadn’t had a necklace made.

“The blanket idea came after a friend of mine made one with Grace’s name on. Her sister Isabelle wears it all the time, it is a comfort to us, so we decided to include it as an option.”

Lisa will be joined by Emma McElhinney, who is battling through her grief after the death of her six-week-old son Callum.

He died of meningitis in January and Emma is raising money for meningitis research.

Emma, of Blakiston Street, said: “It has been tough for us but keeping busy by fund-raising takes our mind off things a bit. We were originally told he had tonsilitis but he didn’t get better and we later found he had caught meningitis because I was carrying the infection Group B Streptococcus (GBS).

“By raising awareness and money we hope to press for more health checks for expectant mums.

“There will be about 40 of us running and so far we have raised more than £3,000. We hope to add to this at the event.”

The fun run will take place on Sunday May 6 at 10.30am for walkers and 11.30am for runners from The Shovels Pub.