Rose Murray commemorates daughter with memorial charity event
My daughter Margaret Murray Collinson was married and had two wonderful boys, Thomas and Jed. Margaret was 38 years old, she developed epilepsy when she had her first baby and on the whole, she coped very well. On 8 September 2004 she went to bed as normal, the next morning her son went into her room wondering why his Mum had not called him for school and found her dead.
They could find no cause of death and could only put it down to her epilepsy. As her family we had no idea that this could happen and had never heard of SUDEP. Since then, I have done some fundraising in aid of SUDEP Action (formerly Epilepsy Bereaved) over the years.
As it was the 10th anniversary I thought I would do something small in her memory. My family came over from Ireland to be with us. At first it was going to be just a raffle at our local Woodbridge Hill Social Club on the 26th of July and they very kindly provided a band for the night. My partner Michael and his friend George then decided to do a 12 hour pool marathon with some other friends, so this went on all day.
Another friend offered to do a cake sale and donate some of the proceeds to SUDEP Action, the cake sale was a great success. Also, her daughter Shannon made bracelets which she sold raising £60, it was just amazing.
We organised the event ourselves with the help of some friends. I wrote to various places for raffle prizes, and people were very generous. We held the raffle in the evening, and also had a ‘guess the weight of the cake’ which was good fun. The raffle and cake sale raised £350. Michael raised over £1000 in sponsorship on his own while the others raised about £400.
I would like to say thank you to the staff of the Woodbridge Hill Club Guildford and all friends who helped us on the day and night. It was very important for me to do something, and also for Margaret’s sons, as life moves on very quickly. It is very healing to take time out to remember our loved ones not with us anymore.