Race for Jemma’s memory

Susan Barnard, who is taking part in the Greater Manchester Marathon
Susan Barnard, who is taking part in the Greater Manchester Marathon

A Wigan mum will be taking on the Greater Manchester Marathon in memory of her daughter’s close friend, who died two years ago.

Susan Barnard, from Whelley, will be doing the 26-mile run this Sunday to raise funds for Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, which treated 13-year-old Jemma Louise Roberts, who died of sepsis in March 2014.

Jemma Roberts

Jemma Roberts

The 43-year-old, who is a supervisor and run leader for Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles, said: “Jemma Louise was a friend of my daughter, Lillie.

“When Jemma, from Whelley, died in 2014 I was already training for the Greater Manchester Marathon and decided to put the event to good use and ask for sponsorship to complete the Marathon to raise money in Jemma’s memory and raised £800.

“I have entered the Greater Manchester Marathon again this year for Alder Hey, and to raise awareness of sepsis and toxic shock syndrome which is the illness that Jemma died from. She went from being a vibrant young girl to being really ill and no one had any control.

“Seeing the devastation that Jemma’s parents, Diane and Tony, and her brother Joseph have gone through losing Jemma is heartbreaking and seeing my daughter and her friends losing their own friend was so hard to watch.

Jemma loved to help people and by raising money in her memory, this will keep her memory alive and she will continue to help others, this is so important

Susan Barnard

“They all still miss Jemma terribly.

“Jemma loved to help people and by raising money in her memory, this will keep her memory alive and she will continue to help others, this is so important.

“I would have loved to have been able to ask a local company to sponsor me for the event in the hope to raise even more money, but unfortunately have not had the time to look into this.

“I hope to raise at least £800, preferably £1,000.

“If I run it and achieve a time of under four hours, I hoped people would sponsor me a certain amount if I achieve this. I have been training for this for the past few months, running a few hundred miles in the process to complete the training.”

To sponsor Susan visit https://www.justgiving.com/Susan-Barnard?utm_id=13

For more information on sepsis and TSS, visit sepsistrust.org/