Fam­ily raise £22,000 in mem­ory of baby Jack

Dum­bar­ton par­ents sup­port Scot­tish Cot DeathTrust

Lennox Herald - - NEWS - Carla Tal­bot

A Dum­bar­ton fam­ily whose new­born baby boy died sud­denly have ded­i­cated their lives to help­ing a char­ity which of­fers sup­port to other heart­bro­ken par­ents who have suf­fered the same tragic loss.

Ni­cola and Scott Miller were left dev­as­tated when they woke to find their three-week-old son Jack dead in his cot.

Their baby boy was born on Oc­to­ber 2, 2011 at the Royal Alexandra Hos­pi­tal in Pais­ley - but a short time later, the cou­ple were left with ag­o­nis­ing ques­tions as he seemed to have died for no rea­son.

In the days after his death, Ni­cola and Scott learned Jack died of SIDS – sud­den in­fant death syn­drome – which af­fects around 300 ba­bies in the UK every year.

Through their grief, they were put in touch with the Scot­tish Cot Death Trust – a char­ity which of­fers sup­port to be­reaved fam­i­lies and ed­u­cates the public and pro­fes­sion­als about cot death and how to re­duce the risks.

It also works to fund re­search to give par­ents an­swers into why ba­bies die and how to pre­vent fu­ture deaths.

Ni­cola, 34, and Scott, 35, be­gan rais­ing cash to help fund this re­search, and over the years it has be­come a labour of love for the cou­ple and their fam­ily, who have all banded to­gether to col­lect more than £22,000 – all in mem­ory of lit­tle Jack.

Along­side Ni­cola’s par­ents Jane, 60, and Robert Collins, 61, and their 11-year-old daugh­ter Christina, Ni­cola and Scott have ded­i­cated so much of their time to help raise aware­ness of cot death.

Ni­cola opened her heart to the Len­nox Her­ald about her quest to teach more peo­ple about the sud­den and in­ex­pli­ca­ble con­di­tion which took her son – who would have turned six last Mon­day.

She said: “I didn’t know any­thing about cot death be­fore we lost Jack.

“I didn’t even know it ex­isted. Now I just want to raise as much aware­ness of it as I can.

“We wanted to do as much as we could to help them be­cause the Trust have been so fan­tas­tic to us and Christina.

“We want to help fund re­search to try and find out why this kind of thing hap­pens.

“We just feel that the more we raise then the more it helps fam­i­lies like us who have been through this tragedy.

“The girls based within the Scot­tish Cot Death Trust have given us so much sup­port, just in know­ing that they are there at the other end of the phone if we need them, is an amazing sup­port net­work.”

Scott and Ni­cola were given no in­di­ca­tion that there was any­thing wrong with Jack be­fore he died.

The cou­ple had put the new­born to bed and around 2.30am dad Scott woke to give him a bot­tle.

It wasn’t un­til they woke six hours later that they re­alised some­thing was hor­ri­bly wrong.

Ni­cola con­tin­ued: “Jack was just a nor­mal wee boy. There was noth­ing wrong with him and there were no signs at all that any­thing was go­ing to hap­pen to him.

“Scott got up to give Jack his night feed. He took his bot­tle as nor­mal and it wasn’t un­til the morn­ing that we re­alised some­thing was wrong.

“It was all a blur. I re­mem­ber call­ing 999 straight away and the paramedics came quite quickly to try and re­vive him but it was too late. “It was hor­rific. I was just hys­ter­i­cal.” As part of their fundrais­ing ef­forts, Ni­cola and her fam­ily are or­gan­is­ing a Christ­mas fayre from 11am-3pm on Novem­ber 4 at the Dum­bar­ton Ma­sonic Hall.

This will be the fifth time they have or­gan­ised the event, and Ni­cola and her mum Jane – who are both reg­is­tered fundrais­ers for the Scot­tish Cot Death Trust – have spent months mak­ing crafts to sell.

Jack’s sis­ter Christina also does her bit to help out by tak­ing scenic pho­to­graphs and mak­ing cal­en­dars which they also sell.

Ni­cola’s dad Robert added: “They work so hard. They don’t just hold the Christ­mas fayre every year, they also go round other events in the Vale, Dum­bar­ton and He­lens­burgh to sell things.

“My wife and daugh­ter spend so much time mak­ing jew­ellery, photo frames and knit­ting things to sell. They are both reg­is­tered fundrais­ers for the char­ity. Christina is amazing too.

“We all do out bit to help and over the years we have raised just over £22,000. It’s such an im­por­tant cause for us and we get a lot of sup­port from so many peo­ple.

“So many lo­cal busi­nesses and peo­ple have helped us raise the money over the years.

“It really is a big fam­ily thing to us. It means a lot.”

Sib­lings Christina hold­ing lit­tle brother Jack after he was born in 2011 Close fam­ily Ni­cola and Scott on hol­i­day with daugh­ter Christina

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