Funeral fund-raiser for Wigan house fire victim raises thousands

Kindhearted Wiganers have dug deep to help cover the funeral costs of a veteran who died following a house fire.

Thursday, 24th June 2021, 8:39 am
Updated Thursday, 24th June 2021, 8:40 am

Catherine Campbell, known as Cat by those closest to her, died following a kitchen blaze at an address in St James Grove, Poolstock, on Sunday afternoon.

Cat and another woman were taken to hospital following the incident, but she died a short time later. The other woman remains stable.

Tributes have poured in for Cat, a former Abraham Guest pupil who went on to join the armed forces, and the community has rallied around her loved ones.

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Flowers left at the scene of the fire in Poolstock
Flowers left at the scene of the fire in Poolstock

A fund-raising evening has been organised, and an online campaign to help cover her funeral costs has already collected more than £1,500 at the time of publication, including a donation from Wigan’s Royal British Legion branch.

On the Go Fund Me page, organiser Carla Metcalfe wrote: “The deeply sad and shocking news has devastated everyone who knew her.

“To everyone that did know her she was full of life and always the life and soul of any party. She will be missed by everyone she come into contact with but is now peacefully at rest with her mum.

“Catherine’s life was tragically cut short by a tragic accident on Sunday 20th June 2021.

Cat Campbell

“Anything raised will go to family towards funeral costs and her partner who has been left with nothing and lost the love of her life.

“One thing I have confidence in is how we can all come together to support the people we care about when times get hard. Thanks again and please share share share, lets give her the best send off she deserves.”

A fund-raising evening , with a raffle and auction, has been organised and will take place at the Prince of Wales Hotel in Woodhouse Lane on Thursday, July 8 from 7pm.

Entry to the event will cost £10, with all proceeds going to Cat’s family.

Flowers left at the scene of the fire in Poolstock

Flowers, cards and teddy bears have also been laid outside the house where the fire broke out.

Heartrending messages from loved ones were among the floral tributes.

One message said: “Can’t believe [you’re] gone. You will be missed so much. Reunited with your mum, gone [too] soon. RIP, Love you, Aunty Allison and Uncle Anthony”.

Another message from Cat’s grandmother read: “ Fly high.”

An investigation into the cause of the fire, which started in the property’s kitchen, is under way between Greater Manchester Police and the fire service, but the incident is not being treated as suspicious.

As an 18-year-old Private, Cat flew out to Africa in 2002, serving as a Combat Medical Technician as part of the British Army’s attempt to bring primary health care to the continent.

She celebrated her 19th birthday in Basra, where she served in the One Close Support Medical Regiment attached to the Seventh Armoured Brigade in Iraq’s second city.

Donations can be made to the fund-raiser at gofundme.com/f/help-towards-funeral-costs-for-cat-campbell.

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