Jack Mason Raises More Than £10,000 For CRY
Western Telegraph, 10th September 2020
One year ago, Jack Mason took part in the Ironman Wales Challenge despite having only 4 months to prepare. His original plan had been to take on the challenge in 2020, however, having tasted victory helping Whitland RFC win the Pembrokeshire KO Cup last year in May, he felt motivated to throw himself right into training and go for it as soon as he could.
Despite the short preparation time, the 35 year old was able to complete the 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile cycle and 26.2 mile run in 16 hours and 40 minutes. Now, 12 months later, Jack has been able to present Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) with a cheque for an amazing £10,123.33. Jack's cousin, Dean, tragically passed away due to a previously undiagnosed heart condition at just 26 years old. The funds raised in his memory will go to the Dean Mason Memorial Fund with the charity in order to provide free heart screenings for young people.
Mark O’Connell Shares Story of Losing His Son Ben and Urges Others to Have Their Children Screened for Heart Conditions
Surrey Live, 28th August 2020
Ben O'Connell was only 14 years old when he passed away last year. He had been completing an obstacle course on a school trip when he collapsed. His father, Mark, tells the story of the tragic day when he received a call at work informing him that his son had been taken to hospital:
"It was from Ben's headmaster saying Ben's, he might have used the word collapsed, but Ben... something had happened and Ben won't be on the coach coming back," Mark recalls. "That's all he said. I asked where he was and he said East Surrey Hospital. He said he tried getting hold of my wife, she works as a dog groomer in Cheam, and she wasn't picking up the phone. And so I said 'okay, thanks for letting me know'. I just got my stuff together and went to leave work."
Managing to get hold of his wife, Cathy, and tell her to get to the hospital, Mark says he rushed there "absolutely screaming". Arriving at the hospital, Mark was led to a room where he saw doctors crouched beside his crying wife.
"No one actually said 'your son is no longer with us, he's died'. No one said those words to me, but they didn't need to," Mark stated."It wasn't until I got to the hospital that it was... and I just collapsed really. I just collapsed and thought this is it."
In the aftermath of the devastating loss of their son, Ben's parents along with his younger sister, Scarlett, sought to make sense of why the healthy and sporty youth had died so suddenly. The answer was discovered in the official postmortem report which found that he had been born with a heart condition that had gone undiagnosed his whole life. He had died of acute haemopericardium, an aortic dissection, and bicuspid aortic valve and coarctation of the aorta as a result of this condition.
"We spent some time with a congenital surgeon as we all had to be tested afterwards and she said that he had two defects working against each other and it was building since the day he was born," Mark relates. "It didn't matter what he was doing on that day, this was going to be the day when everything went catastrophically wrong."
In the year since his death, Ben's name and legacy lives on as his family seeks to prevent others from experiencing their grief through their work fundraising for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) in Ben's Memory to spread awareness and allow for young people to be screened for heart conditions. A charity football tournament made up of current and past teams Ben had played for was organised. With 400 people attending, they were able to raise around £10,000, providing funds for CRY and paying for a defibrillator at Raynes Park.
The one thing Mark hopes will come of Ben's passing is that it will urge other parents to have their children screened for heart conditions.
"Just have a private scan on your child just to make sure," Mark urges. "CRY will, if you get in on time, CRY have a certain amount of spaces each month, I think, where they will fund people to get their children scanned. And a lot of Ben's friends have used that since. I think CRY was planning to go into the schools to speak to them as well."
He continues: "You can argue, I've kind of argued, statistically-wise Ben's taken hits for people. It's like if someone next door to you wins the lottery you think, 'well I'm not going to win it now as they've just won it'. So in the absolute opposite way, if something crap happens to one of your friends, or your neighbours, you think, 'well what's the chance of that happening again to me?' And I don't want people thinking that. I would hate for another family to be going through this."
Team David Fundraise for CRY During Lockdown in Memory of David Green
Bognor Regis Observer, 19th May 2020
David Green was just 19 years old when he passed away in his sleep due an undiagnosed heart condition called Brugada Syndrome. His mother, Gabbie Broadhurst describes him as, "...an extremely active young man who had been involved in competitive sports from the age of eight. His great loves were hockey and football which he played for local teams throughout his life. He was a big spirited young man who would light up a room with his presence and would love to laugh and joke."
Since he passed away, David's friends and family have raised money for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) in his memory. Since 2011, his loved ones have been running the Bognor 10K as Team David to fundraise for CRY. This year it was cancelled due to the outbreak of the corona virus pandemic. However, Team David was determined to find a way to carry on.
"We decided as a Team we wouldn’t let this stop us from running in David’s memory to raise money and awareness for Cardiac Risk in the Young," said Gabbie. "Team David ran the Bognor 10k from every runners hometown from Bognor to Chichester, Petersfield, Portsmouth, Southampton, London and Ireland."
SearchFlow raises funds for CRY in memory of James Pilfold
Today's Conveyancer, 1st May 2020
In February SearchFlow held a fundraising event in memory of James Pilfold, a young colleague who had passed away in December 2018. The event took place on what would have been James' 29th Birthday.
A total of £1,326.97 was raised and donated to Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) to help support affected young people, the heart screening programme, and to fund the research and pathology.
James' colleagues took part in a grand raffle, and a Bake Off. With a merchandise stand and sweepstake also available. Everyone was also encouraged to wear red in honour of CRY.
Further donations are still coming in (https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rememberingjamespilfold) with the total currently standing at over £2,500.
Cornmell Family Takes on 2.6 Challenge for Cardiac Risk in the Young’s 25th Anniversary
The Herts Advertiser, 29th April 2020
The postponement of the London Marathon has prompted the Cornmell family of St. Albans to take on the 2.6 challenge for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY). Based on the distance of the marathon, the challenge sees the family doing a range of activities including running 2.6 miles to holding an online workout for 26 friends. Anita, Steve and their children Jo, Jenny and Billy have also been climbing the stairs 20 times every day until the kids are able to return to their regular activities. Anita has taken part in many fundraising activities for CRY since her father passed away of Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) 11 years ago.
“My dad sadly passed away 11 years ago so my three children never got to meet him – but they know all about him and are so excited to be taking part,” said Anita. “It feels great to be raising funds and awareness to support CRY’s vital work during these difficult times.”
CRY's Chief Executive Steven Cox stated: “We will be with Anita and her family every step of the way as they endeavour to raise awareness and funds to help reduce the incidence of young sudden cardiac death. On behalf of everyone at CRY, I would like to say a big ‘thank you’ to the Cornmells.”
Sue and David Hughes Raise Almost £1000 in One Day for the NHS in Memory of Their Son Daniel
Stoke on Trent Live, 20th April 2020
Lockdown measures have not stopped Sue and David from tirelessly fundraising for good causes. Despite having to stay indoors, the couple has found innovative ways to support charity. Over five years ago, they tragically lost their son Daniel to an undiagnosed heart condition and since then have be staunch supporters of Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) raising more than £250,000 for the charity in his memory in that time and, just last month, raising the funds to purchase 'Dan's Van', a mobile heart screening unit.
Now, in the midst of the Corona Virus pandemic, the couple turned their attention to supporting the NHS in this time of crisis. Their original goal was to raise £500 but thus far have raised £750, with Gift Aid bringing it to £910. Despite lockdown measures limiting their usual fundraising methods, the couple created a 12 hour 'Dan-a-Thon' with an indoor 3 Peaks challenge - walking up and down the stairs 77 times - and a social distancing Potter's 'Arf Marathon which had them walking 13.1 miles around their garden.
"We wanted to raise some money for the NHS to thank them for the work they're doing," said Sue. "And it was nice to have something to do in the house and still be able to raise some money. We did it alongside our grandchildren at their house. They were trampolining and playing netball. We could still connect with everyone, even when we can't physically be together."
Vu Vo to Take On London Marathon for CRY in Memory of Best Friend Simon Sin
Newham Recorder, 24th March 2020
Vu was inspired to take up the challenge following the death of his best friend, Simon who passed away in 2018 at the age of just 35 of a sudden cardiac arrest. Vu tells the story:
"I remember clearly being over at Simon’s house, my oldest and best friend since childhood. We were talking up things we would do, saying that in our lifetime we would run the London Marathon. We promised. However, tragically and suddenly within two weeks of this promise, Simon passed away from sudden cardiac arrest."
"In memory of Simon, I’m honouring our promise to run the London Marathon," he continued. "We should act in the now rather than waiting for things to fall into place as it may never happen."
He will be running to raise money for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY). The event has now been postponed till October 4th due to the spread of corona virus. However Vu remains determined to complete this challenge stating: "To be honest, I’m a bit anxious as it is totally out of my comfort zon. Training has been harder than I had realised. I’ve wanted to quit on several of my long runs, but I’ve managed to keep inching forward. I’m determined to get to that finish line."
Rhyl Fundraising Memorial Bike Ride for CRY Cancelled Due to Covid 19
Rhyl, Prestatyn & Abergele Journal, 20th March 2020
This coming Saturday, more than 35 cyclists were meant to come together in Rhyl for a bike ride in memory of Alex Jones, a young cyclist who passed away a year ago due to an undiagnosed heart condition while on the course. The memorial ride was also intended to be a fundraiser which sought to raise £5,000 for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY); a sum which would provide 100 young people in North Wales with free heart screenings. Unfortunately, the Memorial Ride had to be postponed due to the spread of Covid 19.
"We have postponed the Memorial Ride in view of the latest guidance on Covid-19," said Alex's mother, Audrey. "It is unfortunate that we need to do this but to go ahead in the circumstances would I feel have been irresponsible."
She added: "Hopefully within the next few months we will be able to arrange another date - everything is still in place to get things going again."
Charlotte Luckett Takes On 12 Marathons for CRY in Memory of Her Brother Martyn
North Devon Gazette, 18th March 2020
Charlotte's younger brother, Martyn, suddenly passed away of an undiagnosed heart condition in 2005 at the age of just 19. Since then, Charlotte and her family have been working hard to raise funds and awareness for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) so that potentially life saving heart screenings can be held in North Devon.
This year, Charlotte plans to take on 12 marathons; one for each of the estimated 12 young sudden deaths a week due to undiagnosed cardiac conditions in the UK.
She states: "I will never stop raising awareness or fundraising for CRY until screening is provided for all young people on the NHS to stop these needless deaths. Since Martyn passed away, my family, friends and I have tirelessly raised funds for local screenings so it’s now part of the community; several people have raised money to continue with the screenings, as they’re so vitally important. I wanted to do something a bit different for CRY this year as it’s the last year of my thirties and that’s why I’m taking on the 12 half marathon challenge. I really want to make each race individual to the person I’m running in memory of and to make their lives count."
Police Duo to Take On 2,500 Mile Bike Ride to Gibraltar in Support of CRY
Isle of Wight County Press, 16th March 2020
Police constable Adam Hinkley and his retired colleague Kate Fowles are to take part in a charity motorbike ride to the Rock of Gibraltar in order to raise money for two charities; Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) and The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust (EMCT). The journey of 2,500 miles will take the duo through France and Spain all the way to the Rock of Gibraltar in a challenge which is being called From One Rock to Another.
"We are funding the event ourselves, but looking to raise as much money as possible for two great causes," said Adam. "A number of years ago, my wife Lucy, who now works for the EMCT, lost her brother to an undiagnosed heart condition. Every year since then, her family has raised money for the charity, CRY, so this has inspired me to do my bit."
Family’s Efforts Help CRY Purchase £25k Van in Memory of Daniel Hughes
Stoke on Trent Live, 14th March 2020
Thanks to the fundraising efforts of the Hughes family, Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) now has a new van and the capacity to screen 50,000 more young people. Five years ago, Sue and David Hughes lost their 28 year old son, Daniel, to an undiagnosed heart condition. Since he passed away, the couple and their daughter, Kim, have raised more than £250,000 in his memory for CRY. These funds have already helped the charity screen more that 2,100 young people and potentially save the lives of 62 people who were referred for further testing following their initial screenings. Now, thanks to a donation of £25,000, CRY has a new mobile screening van in its fleet which is to be unveiled at an upcoming screening event in Derby.
Family Organises Fundraising Bike Ride in Memory of Anthony Talbot
Lancashire Post, 12th March 2020
Anthony Talbot was 48 years old when he passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest at work. He had known he had a heart condition called cardiomyopathy but was told it was mild. Now, his family has planned four day, 350 mile, fundraising bike ride from Preston to Ireland in order to support Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) and North West Air Ambulance in memory of Anthony. The cycle will be led by Anthony's brother Rob and is being planned to take place between the 30th of June and 4th of July.
"Rob is a keen cyclist and has completed lots and lots of charity events in the past," said Anthony's wife Joanne. "It used to be that Anthony would meet him at the end to cheer him on. They were very close brothers, best friends really, and saw each other nearly every day. Organising and training for this bike ride has been good for Rob because it’s given him something to focus on and has helped him with the process of grieving."
She added: "It’s so important to keep it running and we also want to support CRY who have tested our friends and family for cardiomyopathy since Anthony died."
Kirsty Jones to Run London Marathon for CRY in Memory of Friend
Northamptonshire Telegraph, 12th March 2020
Kirsty will be running to support Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) in memory of a university friend who passed away at just 21 years old due to an undiagnosed heart condition.
"This is definitely going to be my biggest challenge yet," Kirsty said. "But after nine years of trying to get into the London Marathon through the ballot, I always had CRY at the forefront of my mind as the charity I wanted to run it for and have previously raised money for them when I did a skydive in Germany. This year I applied for London Marathon through CRY and was overjoyed to be offered a place by them. I have had my own heart issues over the years and so know how important screenings through CRY can be. But I also wanted to raise money for this charity after a friend of mine from university died from young sudden cardiac death syndrome, he was only 21 and taken far, far too young. Deaths like these can be prevented and the work and screenings that CRY do can really help."
Family Fundraises for Potentially Life Saving Heart Screenings in Memory of Son Aaron Dixon
Northwich Guardian, 7th August 2015
Aaron Dixon passed away at only 23 years old due to an undiagnosed heart condition called arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy. Since his tragic death in 2011, his family have worked hard to prevent other families from suffering the loss they have, fundraising for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) to provide free screenings for youth between the ages of 14 and 35.
"It's sort of bittersweet really because we didn't really know anything about it and would have had Aaron screened if we had," said Aaron's mother Deborah, emphasising why it is so important to have young people screened. "Aaron was really fit and healthy – he went to the gym and played football. But, if there is a defect, the more they exercise the more it stimulates the heart and it makes it worse. It's sickening really that you encourage your children to be healthy and unknowingly it's killing them."
Deborah Dixon Named Granada’s Fundraiser of the Year for Her Work in Support of CRY
ITV News, 8th October 2019
From amongst many amazing fundraisers from the region, Debbie Dixon was awarded Granada's Fundraiser of the Year for her work in support of Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) in memory of her son Aaron. She was interviewed by Pride of Britain reporter Victoria Grimes after hearing the good news of her win.