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Ipswich family thank EACH for ‘helping us to heal after heart-wrenching chapter of our lives’

PUBLISHED: 12:45 09 May 2017

James' family at The Treehouse in Ipswich. Picture: EACH

James' family at The Treehouse in Ipswich. Picture: EACH

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A Suffolk family raised £7,000 for the hospice which cared for their newborn baby who beat the odds to keep breathing after his life support machine was switched off.

Jonathan and Joanne Rawlings with baby James at East Anglia's Children's Hospices. Picture: EACHJonathan and Joanne Rawlings with baby James at East Anglia's Children's Hospices. Picture: EACH

Jonathan and Joanne Rawlings from Ipswich were able to spend more time with their son James after he battled to survive despite suffering severe complications at birth at Ipswich Hospital.

Young James was transferred to hospital in Norwich, where the East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) helped his parents make some precious memories with him before his life support machine was switched off.

Despite all odds, James kept breathing and the family were offered a place at The Treehouse hopice in Ipswich.

During their stay, James’s parents were shown how to provide the specialist care he needed, before spending five days together at home.

James' family releasing balloons at EACH's The Treehouse hospice in Ipswich. Picture: EACHJames' family releasing balloons at EACH's The Treehouse hospice in Ipswich. Picture: EACH

James died on May 16, 2016, aged just 19 days.

To mark what would have been James’s first birthday, on Friday, April 28, his parents, together with their newborn son Joshua James, were joined by other relatives to release balloons at The Treehouse

Over the past year, Mr Rawlings, a 40-year-old general manager at Precision Cargo Services in Felixstowe, and Mrs Rawlings, 34, an assistant manager at the Ipswich branch of DJ Evans have been fundraising for the charity.

The family has organised barn dances and online auctions to add to money collected t James’s funeral. Friends have added to the total by climbing Ben Nevis and taking part in the Great North Run.

Mrs Rawlings said: “EACH have embraced us into their family and we’re supported as little or as much as we want. They’re like a loving parent – there when you need them to guide you through the things in life you never think you’ll be able to handle.

“The biggest compliment I can pay is that, if we hadn’t received the help and kindness EACH provided by wrapping their arms around us and helping us to heal and progress after this heart-wrenching chapter of our lives, our newborn son and James’ little brother Joshua James wouldn’t be here today.

“There’re no words or sums of money we could come up with to ever pay back the outstanding care we received.”

Mr Rawlings will be running EACH’s Ipswich Colour Dash on Sunday, May 28, at Christchurch Park. Visit here for details www.each.org.uk/colour-dashes.


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