Ipswich: Niece runs in memory of Sarah Shields to thank charities who supported murder victim’s family
12:12 04 March 2013
RUNNING in memory of her auntie and best friend, Stacey Stephenson is aiming to raise money for the charities which have helped her family in the wake of Sarah Shields’s brutal murder.
• Missing Abroad was set up following the disappearance of Lucie Blackman in 2000
• The Lucie Blackman Trust has assissted other families of missing relatives and established Missing Abroad to provide the unique expertise, practical help, advice and support gained by Lucie’s family.
For more information visit www.missingabroad.org
• Victim Support is a national charity giving free and confidential help to victims of crime, witnesses, their family, friends and anyone else affected across England and Wales.
For more information visit www.victimsupport.or.uk
The 23-year-old was throttled by her boyfriend Christopher Chittock while the couple were on holiday in Gran Canaria in July 2010.
Chittock, who was sentenced to 24 years in prison after being found guilty of Sarah’s murder last Friday, broke her nose, smashed her head against rocks and strangled her before dumping her body in the sea off the coast of the Spanish island and returning home to the UK claiming she had left him for an English expat she met on holiday.
Sarah’s parents Angela and David Shields, her brother Paul and sister Belinda (Stacey’s mum) all flew to the island’s capital Las Palmas for the trial last week.
But without the support of charity Missing Abroad, Miss Stephenson said her family would not have been able to afford to travel to Spain to see justice done for Sarah.
To show her thanks, the 25-year-old, who grew up like a sister to Sarah, is training for a gruelling challenge to help raise money for the cause.
And she is entering another run in October to raise money for Victim Support, who have provided a “constant support” for her nanny, Mrs Shields ever since Sarah was found dead in July 2010.
“It is a huge relief for the whole family to see justice done for Sarah,” she told The Star.
“We have waited a long time but knowing he will pay for what he has done means we can put the trial behind us.
“My nanny has been through a terrible time over the last two and a half years but Victim Support have always been there for her, visiting every week.
“It is important for me to say thank you to them. “And also to Missing Abroad – without them my family wouldn’t have been able to travel to Spain.”
The first challenge is taking place in June, when Miss Stephenson, of Wentworth Drive, Felixstowe, will take on a 10k obstacle course at Poplar Park.
In October she will run the BUPA Great South Run in memory of Sarah.
- To donate to Stacey’s cause visit www.justgiving.com/Stacey-Stephenson1 for Victim Support and www.justgiving.com/Stacey-Stephenson2 for Missing Abroad.