Scaling new heights for Kerry

THE maternity block at Ipswich Hospital was a hive of activity at the weekend as hundreds of daredevils lined up to bravely descend the towering building as the hospital hosted its annual charity abseil challenge as Hollie-Rae Merrick reports.

IPSWICH: She won the hearts of town residents, and now brave Kerry Thorpe is continuing her inspirational journey as her family and friends take on a massive challenge in her name.

Fourteen of her closest friends and family members took to new heights for her, when they completed the Ipswich Hospital charity abseil in her honour yesterday.

Without a double lung transplant Kerry, who suffers from cystic fibrosis (CF), has less than 16 months to live. But her determination has shone through and she aims to raise awareness of the condition and to raise as much money as possible to help find a cure.

Diagnosed with CF at just six months old, Kerry is now so ill she can’t even climb the stairs on her own. And while she waits to be added to the transplant list she continues her fight to put on weight and remain as healthy as possible.

Kerry waited amongst the crowds at the Heath Road site, cheering as each of her cystic fibrosis team made their way down the multi-storey block as part of the annual festivities.

Megan Nelli, sister of Kerry’s fiance Josh, even scaled the side of the building with a broken toe –sustained at her school prom last week.

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“I am so proud of everyone who has done this for me,” said Kerry. “They completed this in support of a charity which is clearly something I feel very strongly about.

“I can’t believe that people have been so generous. So far we have raised about �3,000 and I am completely delighted.”

Kerry was devastated that she was unable to complete the challenge herself, after doctors at Papworth Hospital warned her that she wasn’t strong enough to take it on.

She added: “After I have my transplant, I will be on top of that hospital preparing to abseil down it. I’m a bit of an adrenaline junkie – I want to do everything that I haven’t been able to do over the years.”

n Send your messages of support to Kerry Thorpe. Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail

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