In 2002, we were very proud to announce Sir Ian Botham as one of CRY’s first Patrons. The first event Beefy attended for CRY was in Parliament at the launch of the Cardiac Risk in the Young All Party Parliamentary Group.
“We must stop these terrible tragedies,” he powerfully stated at the event. “Youngsters are dying needlessly – we can and must change things. At the end of the day these deaths are indiscriminate. They affect all sorts of people – amateur sportsmen, professional sportsmen, a guy playing on a pitch, a kid at a school sports day. It is something that must be addressed and has been swept under the carpet for too long.”
CRY is a UK charity that supports those affected by conditions that can cause young sudden cardiac death. CRY provides families with bereavement support and funds fast-track expert pathology investigations at the CRY Centre for Cardiac Pathology (www.cry-ccp.org.uk); raises awareness of signs and symptoms of cardiac conditions and supports young people diagnosed with life-threatening conditions through the myheart network (www.myheart.org.uk); funds medical research and operates a nationwide cardiac screening programme for any person between the age of 14 and 35 (www.testmyheart.org.uk); and also funds fast-track expert medical services at the CRY Centre for Inherited Cardiovascular Conditions and Sports Cardiology.
When Beefy first started to support CRY, we were screening a few thousand young people each year. However, with his support along the way, we have reached a position where we are able to screen over 30,000 people a year (prior to CRY’s screening events being put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic). So far we have tested over 220,000 people.
In August of 2014, the Beefy foundation donated a much-needed van for our mobile screening programme. A year later the foundation donated 4 ECG machines, and within 6 months we received a further donation of a mobile ultrasound echo machine. Together this made up one of CRY’s full mobile cardiac screening units, which travel throughout the UK testing any young person between the age of 14 and 35.
Beefy’s mobile cardiac screening unit has tested more than 37,000 people across 375 screening days and identified more than 120 young people with serious, potentially life-threatening conditions. These young people have been given potentially life-saving operations or treatment thanks to the support of the Beefy foundation.
Now, to ensure our mobile screening units are kept up to date and run as effectively as possible, CRY has purchased a new set of vans which will help continue the development of our screening programme. This means that after many valuable years, the time has come for the “Beefy” van to retire.
Over the past 18 years we have been enormously appreciative and proud of everything Beefy has done for CRY, whether it has been giving MPs a hard time in Parliament, supporting major events, or donating the van that was an integral piece of equipment to help us screen more young people and save lives.
Thank you for everything you have done for CRY.