A THATCHAM family whose baby died of a heart condition have raised £11,560 in a few short months for the hospital ward that cared for her and to help other critically-ill children.
Carly Williams told the Newbury Weekly News that her late niece, Tahlia Luella Williams, born on August 29, 2015, and weighing 6lbs 6oz, faced a battle for life, just a few days after her birth.
Carly’s sister, Sarah, had discovered at 20 weeks pregnant that her daughter would be born with a heart condition and faced open-heart surgery shortly after being born.
She was just three days old when the operation took place, and seven hours after the operation, the sisters were told it had been a success. However, Tahlia’s heart condition proved more complicated and the infant faced further surgery.
Carly said: “Tahlia fought with such strength through another three open-heart operations and a smaller heart surgery.
“After a battle beyond the strength of anyone we have ever met and that the doctors, nurses and surgeons of the PICU ward in Southampton had ever seen, Tahlia lost her battle for life at just 27 days old on the 25th of September 2015 in her mummy’s arms, with myself and our dad by her side.”
Sarah set up a fundraising Facebook page to raise awareness of congenital heart disease (CHD) and to raise funds for The Friends of the PICU – the specialist ward at Southampton General Hospital that cared for Tahlia.
The family recently presented the hospital with a cheque towards funds for an expansion project at the ward planned for October this year.
“This will make a huge difference to critically-ill children and in the memory of our beautiful hero Tahlia’s name,” said Carly, who added that the fundraising had been completed in June.
The family has donated the money towards the £30,000 target set by the ward to buy a new giraffe bed and heating mattresses.