Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 22°C

min temp: 15°C

Search

Gallery: Father’s Day is extra special for Jodie Harrington and dad Tony, who she claims made her the woman she is now

Jodie Harrington with dad Tony  photo by Justin Marchant Photography

Jodie Harrington with dad Tony  photo by Justin Marchant Photography

Justin Marchant Photography

Tony Harrington was forced to take on the role of both mum and dad when his wife died suddenly just 16 days after the birth of their baby daughter.

Jodie Harrington and dad Tony.
Jodie Harrington and dad Tony.

And 27 years on, proud daughter Jodie has hailed her dad for being the best parent she could have asked for and has a series of treats lined up for Father’s Day to show her gratitude.

“You get all these men who say they can’t do things but they can, my dad is living proof of that,” said the former Copleston High School pupil, who now lives in Trimley St Martin.

“My dad made me the woman I am.”

Jodie’s mum Narina developed a blood clot in her leg in the days after her daughter was born, although doctor’s were unable to establish if it was linked to the birth.

“It might have been because she wasn’t moving around as much, but they don’t know,” said Jodie.

The blood clot caused a heart attack and Narina Harrington died, leaving her husband to care for their newborn baby.

“It all happened so quickly,” said Jodie, now 27. ”I was born on December 3, my mum died on December 19 and her funeral was on December 24.

“Dad says that time was a bit of a blur for him but he threw himself in at the deep end, and managed to juggle everything.

“He had this little baby to look after but he still went out to work so he could provide for both himself and me and he still managed to put dinner on the table in the evenings.”

Tony, who works in the finance department at Ipswich Hospital, instilled a true sense of pride into his daughter, who is now a mum herself.

“You get all these men who say they can’t do things but they can, my dad is living proof of that,” said Jodie, who grew up in Ipswich and went to Copleston High School.

“I have had set backs but I have always worked, and that is because of my dad, he has such a strong work ethic.”

This week Jodie sent her dad a Father’s Day message via our website, she wrote: “My dad is so special to me because he has brought me up on his own since I was 16 days old and made me into the woman I am now. Always there to help me and supports me through any decision I make.”

She added: “I know I don’t tell you enough how much I appreciate everything you do for me, thank you.”

Having her own daughter has given Jodie an even greater understanding of how tough those early years must have been for her dad.

“When I tell him what Emily has been upto he says ‘oh they all do that, you did it once too’.

“She is 21 months now and has started having tantrums, it makes me think ‘how did my dad deal with that?’ And how did he cope with me waking up through the night then go and do a full days work without having a break down?”

The pair have always had a unique bond and although Jodie now lives in Trimley St Martin they remain extremely close.

“It was only ever us two, I was an only child and sadly dad has never met anyone else, he was always too busy looking after me.

“I would never leave his side when I was younger, if he dropped me at nursery I would cling to his leg because I didn’t want him to leave. And now I ring him most days to make sure he is okay,” said Jodie, a healthcare advisor for the NHS 111 service.

“I probably talk to him about a lot more than other girls would with their dads. I guess when I was a teenager he was probably quite embarrassed at the things I had to tell him.”

See today’s Ipswich Star for eight pages of Father’s Day messages.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

A group of travellers who had set up an unlawful camp on the West End Road car park in Ipswich have now moved on to the Bramford Lane Recreation ground in the north west of town.

Witnesses to a crash in an Ipswich retail park, which has left an eight-year-old girl in hospital, are being asked to come forward.

A 45-year-old man from Ipswich is in custody this morning after being arrested over reports several cars were damaged in a car park.

Ed Sheeran will compete against friend Stormzy for this year’s Mercury Prize.

An Ipswich playgroup which has gone from outstanding to inadequate in just two years has been forced to close its doors for good after a second damning Ofsted inspection, leaving dozens of families hastily finding new places for their children.

A Felixstowe pizza delivery driver was chased round his car by a youth firing ball bearings from a catapult, a court has heard.

A woman in her 70s has spoken of her “shock” after an alleged assault saw her knocked to the ground in the high street of a Suffolk town.

Highly controversial plans to build more than 200 new houses in John Constable’s home village should go ahead, planners are recommending

The remains of an outdoor classroom set alight in Ipswich’s Christchurch Park have again been hit by fire.

Birch Farm Nursery in Hintlesham, which was given an ‘inadequate’ Ofsted in December, has made significant progress to gain the requires improvement rating on its re-inspection last month.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24