On Sunday 22nd April, Lichfield resident, Vicky Malone will be taking part in the iconic London Marathon in memory of her son, James, who died in 2016 when he was two-and-a-half years old. Vicky said:
“James was like a tornado in our family. We used to call him Captain Chaos for his boundless energy and the way he was so completely fearless. Anyone who ever had the joy of meeting James came away completely exhausted and entertained in equal measure. He was our world.
“No words can describe the trauma and agony of losing a child. Not only is it utterly devastating but it’s also a very lonely kind of grief. We felt like the only people in the world who had gone through anything like this. Although we were lucky enough to have a huge support network around us, there was nobody who could really advise us on how to support each other or our daughter, Holly. We just felt completely traumatised and had no idea how we could even begin to cope.”
By running the 26 mile race, Vicky hopes to raise £8,500 for national charity Child Bereavement UK, which has supported Vicky and her husband John since the death of their son.
“Although everyone deals with things differently, talking with an expert really helps to scratch beneath the surface and facilitates a deeper conversation. It can take real courage to acknowledge your grief and talk to a professional, but that simple step has helped us rebuild our family together.”
Vicky decided to run the London Marathon when she was pregnant with her now 6 month old daughter, Georgina and has found the training process therapeutic.
“When Georgina was a few weeks old, I could tell I was starting to feel low, managing my grief and the demands of coping with a newborn baby, so I went out for a very gentle little jog with my friend. I immediately felt so much more positive and it was nice just to get out and chat about normal, everyday things. Since then, I’ve found running has been my quiet time, my James time.
“During those long four hour runs, it’s been easy to forget why I’m running and then I’ve remembered and have had a little wobble. I’ve been running with a big group of friends and have had so much support along the way, it’s also turned out to be an important part of managing my own mental health as well as raising a huge amount of money for this amazing charity.”
Vicky hasn’t yet decided how she will celebrate finishing the marathon, but said:
“I’m looking forward to wearing heels without the worry of injury, lie-ins and running just for fun!”
If you would like to show your support to Vicky and do so in memory of her “beautiful little rascal”, please visit her fundraising page: http://bit.ly/2pvVWKB
Alternatively, if you would like to take part in the London Marathon 2019 or any other challenge event in aid of Child Bereavement UK, please contact Becky on 01494 568 932.
Notes for Editors
Child Bereavement UK supports families and educates professionals when a baby or child of any age dies or is dying, or when a child is facing bereavement. Every year we train over 9,000 professionals, helping them to better understand and meet he needs of bereaved families.
Press Enquiries: Ruth Sanger
Tel: 01494 568 932