Local dad runs London Marathon and raises £1,100 for The Sick Children’s Trust

A grateful father whose daughter required lifesaving surgery when she was just ten months old took on the iconic Virgin Money London Marathon on 22 April to raise money for The Sick Children’s Trust – a charity which supports families with seriously ill children in hospital with free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation.

Tom Fowler, 46, from Brightlingsea, completed the 26.2 mile course in just 3 hours 29 minutes to thank the charity for giving him and his wife, Gemma, free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation in 2010 when their daughter, Violet, needed emergency treatment miles away from home.

At just ten months old, Violet became seriously ill with mastoiditis, an infection of the skull’s mastoid bone, located just behind the ear. The affected ear became raised and pushed forward, with visible and tender swelling. Violet was admitted to Colchester General Hospital and immediately given antibiotics in an attempt to overcome the infection. However, over the next two days, rather than improve, her condition deteriorated with the swelling causing pressure to build on her brain. The decision was made to transfer her to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge for lifesaving treatment. She underwent a complicated operation to drain the middle ear and relieve the pressure that the fluid was exerting on her brain. Whilst she recovered on the paediatric intensive care unit (PICU) at Addenbrooke’s Hospital Tom and Gemma, along with Violet’s older sister, Molly, were supported by The Sick Children’s Trust at Acorn House, free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation located just moments from where Violet was recuperating.

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