Family raises £50k for children’s hospice in memory of son

Sharon, Harry, Josh and Darren.

Sharon, Harry, Josh and Darren. - Credit: Archant

A Weston couple has raised thousands of pounds for a children’s hospice in memory of their son Harry, who died from cancer.

Harry Davies was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer in his lower arm at the age of three.

He spent eight months at Bristol Children's Hospital having chemotherapy, followed by surgery in Birmingham to have the radius bone removed from his arm.

Three years later, Harry relapsed, and his parents' worst fears were confirmed when Harry was diagnosed with acute myeloid lymphoma.

After Harry's diagnosis, his parents Darren and Sharon were introduced to Children's Hospice South West (CHSW) in Wraxall, where 'nothing was too much trouble' for the caring staff.

Darren said: "After our day visit, we stayed for three weeks.

"That was a bit surreal because we knew this would be the last place, the last holiday, we would be together.

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"The staff were really welcoming, and I remember their taking our bags up to our room and my thinking it was like a hotel.

"The atmosphere was like a lovely holiday home."

The family made lasting memories during their stay and met other families at Charlton Farm.

Darren said: "We went on a trip to LegoLand, which was a huge undertaking for the care team, and a lot of planning went into the visit.

"But the whole family made the visit and loved it. We could never have done that on our own. It would have been so stressful for us. But, for the care team, nothing was too much trouble."

Harry died in July 2011, and the family has been raising money for CHSW ever since.

Darren and Sharon set up a fundraising group called Raise a Smile for Harry (RASFH), and family and friends have taken part in a number of charity events, including the Moonlight Beach Walk, charity football matches and the London Marathon.

Sharon is a member of Weston Whippets running club, which also raises cash for the cause.

She said: "When the time came, there was no better place to be or people to be with.

"What is more, the hospice continued to support us to help deal with our loss for as long as we needed it.

"With the help of our friends, we are so intent on trying to support CHSW, who run three hospices and are making the most of short and precious lives across the South West."