A family are overwhelmed by the support shown for a fundraising campaign in memory of their son, who died suddenly from a heart condition last year.
Kevin and Trudy Anderson, of Norton, are appealing for help with a tombola and bag-packing day at Malton’s Morrison’s supermarket in tribute to Michael, who would have been 21 on Monday.
So far, they have been inundated with donations for the January fundraiser with more than 25 prizes from the likes of Flamingo Land, York City Football Club, Eden Camp and Sota.
Proceeds will go to Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY), the charity which they say did so much to help the family come to terms with their loss.
Michael died in his sleep in January last year, hours after completing his first shift as a licensed doorman at The King’s Head, Malton. An inquest later found he had died from natural causes due to an undiagnosed heart condition.
Kevin, who works at Morrison’s and Station Taxis, Norton, said: “As a family it was a massive shock that we will never get over.
“I am so proud of how my wife and children, Emma and Louise, cope every day with the huge gap in our lives.
“I try to stay strong for them, but I think we all need to stay strong for each other. Our friends and workmates help, they all listen to us and give us a big hug when needed.”
Now they want to do their bit to support CRY and raise awareness of its work.
Kevin said: “As well as raising money for projects such as research into genetic heart conditions and causes of sudden cardiac death and donating valuable equipment for GP surgeries and hospitals, they also campaign for young children at school to be tested and if Michael had been he may still have been with us now.
“CRY also supports those who have suffered a similar tragedy in their lives.
“Every day I worry for our other children as, when someone dies so suddenly, it affects many people – young people especially.
“They often grieve silently, not knowing how to ease their pain, what to do, how to help themselves or others. We don’t want what happened to us to happen to any other family, but it still is.”
Michael’s sisters are also doing their bit for CRY by bravely volunteering for a sponsored sky dive in March and they also have the support of local businesses and especially Lisa Ridsdale, of Station Taxis, who has been a ‘rock’ in organising the fundraisers.
Kevin said: “We can’t thank these people enough. It fills us with pride that people who did not know Michael or ourselves are bending over backwards to help.
“We have some fantastic prizes, so it will be well worth a trip to the store, but we would like to get as many prizes as we can to raise as much money and awareness as possible.”
The bag-packing day will take place on January 23.
Anyone who would like to donate a raffle prize should contact Lisa or Kevin at Station Taxis on 01653 696969.