A Nuneaton woman who died suddenly while on a night out with friends is one of the faces of a new high profile campaign.
Tragically Claire Keen was struck down by adult cot death four years ago, leaving behind a grieving family struggling to understand what happened to their bright and bubbly sister and daughter.
A post mortem revealed that the 27-year-old admin worker died of Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy, otherwise know as Sudden Adult Death Syndrome.
Desperate for no-one to suffer similar heartache, Claire’s family are now lobbying the government to raise awareness of the condition and to ensure everyone can be checked out for symptoms before it’s too late.
“Experts say now that 12 young people die every week from undetected heart conditions and that this is going to be a bigger killer than cancer,” said Claire’s father Peter, who lives in Villiers Street.
“Claire’s face, alongside the faces of 11 others, now features on a postcard created by CRY, which is the Cardiac Risk in the Young charity to illustrate how big the problem is.
“We want as many people as possible to fill them in and send them to their MP Bill Olner who is not yet signed up to an All Party Parliamentary Group launched by CRY president Sir Ian Botham.
“It was set up to provide a forum for MPs to ask the campaign and it is one of the most supported all-party groups so far raising awareness among the politicians and in government itself.”
The postcard also features the face of Hinckley United football player Matt Gatsby who died of the condition aged 27, during an away match in 2006, alongside ten others aged from just 15 years of age to 33.
The Keen family set-up stall at the Nuneaton branch of the Co-op, to appeal to shoppers to add their details to the rear of the postcard.
The Nuneaton News has also backed the campaign and has a number of the cards available on reception at its office in Newton Road, by the main buys depot, for people to add their support.
CRY was set up in May 1995 to offer counselling to those affected by the sudden loss of a loved one while also seeking to buy essential equipment and provide screening.
Patrons of the charity include David Walliams, who recently appeared in a short film to reassure people that the screening echo cardiogram process in not a scary one. More information about the charity is available by logging onto http://www.c-r-y.org.uk