Family's emotional return to hand over £15,000 to baby unit
A FAMILY returned to the special care unit at Southmead to hand over more than £15,000 raised in memory of their baby.
George Henry Wright and his brother Stanley Joseph were born three months early in June 2010.
They were taken straight to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Southmead Hospital, where both boys went through their difficult times.
But just six weeks after they were born George developed necrotizing enterocolitis, a condition which affects the intestine and bowel and died within 18 hours.
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Stanley survived, despite his lung collapsing seven times, suffering a brain bleed and prolonged jaundice.
Despite spending three months in the NICU, he is now like "any other two-and-a-half-year-old", said mum Katie Wright, who lives in Yate with husband Craig.
She returned to the hospital yesterday with Stanley and her sister Ellie Higgins to hand over the money they raised for the hospital unit in George's memory.
They raised more than £15,000 for the NICU through their Little Stars Charity Fun Day on the second anniversary of George's death to show their gratitude for the care the boys received.
The event at Chipping Sodbury Rugby Club included an It's A Knockout-style event and children's entertainment, raising more than £10,000.
Ms Higgins also organised a sponsored sew at work, which raised £500 which was matched by her employer Lloyds TSB.
Mrs Wright, 33, said there were "mixed emotions" as she returned to the NICU.
"We have been in to see the consultants and had a few appointments with Stanley and we always pop in and take cakes," she said.
"It's brilliant, the amount of money we have raised, but we would have preferred to have been doing it with the two of them. It was really good having something to focus on and gave us something to work towards in George's memory."
Mrs Wright said that when they started the fundraising the initial target was to raise £3,000 for the unit and as things took off they considered the possibility they might raise £5,000 but never predicted a final total beyond £15,000.
Her sister said: "We had no idea we would raise anywhere near what we have done, it is really great.
"I think we felt that we had to do something to make a difference. It was something in George's memory and something that was also a bit of fun. It was on the anniversary of his death and we picked that deliberately because we thought it was going to be really hard for my sister and it ended up being a really nice day so we ended up smiling and laughing and remembering George."
Mrs Wright added: "The care provided by the neonatal unit inspired me and my family to raise much needed funds for the specialist unit. All the doctors and nurses came in to see Stanley when we went in and were thrilled to see how well he is doing.
Head of fundraising at Southmead Hospital, Trevor Reid, said: "We want to extend our thanks to Katie, her husband Craig and their whole family for making this wonderful donation."
"To raise £15,000 is an astonishing feat and these funds will go a long way to helping other babies and families in our neonatal unit."
The family is still raising money for the NICU through www.justgiving.com/littlestarsfunday.