News Staff November 7, 2018

A local dad has kicked off his fundraising mission by running the Royal Parks Half Marathon for The Sick Children’s Trust, a charity that supported his family when his son required lifesaving treatment in a hospital far away from home.

Ryan Mathewson, 27, from Bedford, and his partner, Larissa Conley, were over the moon when baby William was born in June 2015. However, just 20 minutes later and struggling to breathe, William began to crash and was rushed to the neonatal unit at Bedford Hospital. 11 days later, ventilated, and showing no signs of improvement the decision was made to transfer William to The Rosie Hospital in Cambridge for specialist treatment. On arrival baby William was admitted onto neonatal intensive care unit and underwent rigorous tests. It was at this point that his parents were offered a room in Chestnut House, free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation run by The Sick Children’s Trust.

Dad, Ryan, who completed the iconic 13.1 miles Royal Parks Half Marathon in 2:13:42 and is planning future challenges, says:
“Chestnut House became our home. When we moved in we didn’t know just how long our stay would be, but doctors continued to carry out all sorts of tests and we quickly became familiar with the specialists and nurses in charge of William’s care. After two weeks, William was transitioned to the high dependency unit and we moved across to the charity’s second ‘Home from Home’ in Cambridge, Acorn House. Acorn House was incredible too. A proper home, with a spacious kitchen, big bathrooms and amazing house staff who knew exactly what to say to us whenever we saw them. You can’t imagine the relief of not having to go far from your child; it really removed enormous pressures, not just practically, but emotionally and financially too.”

To get behind The Sick Children’s Trust and sponsor Ryan visit his Just Giving site

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