Couple prepare for a 990 mile charity tractor ride in memory of their daughter Little Miss Giggles who died of a brain stem tumour.
- Credit: Archant
A couple are preparing to set off on a 990-mile tractor ride in memory of their ‘Little Miss Giggles’ daughter who died earlier this year.
Alyson and Neil Clark go from Lands End on Tuesday (1) and arrive at John O Groats on Saturday (5) towing a candy pink trailer along the route in tribute to Mikayla – dubbed Little Miss Giggles by the Manea Pre-School she attended.
The tractor ride was inspired by Mikayla, who loved to spend time with her dad, a 33-year-old farm manager for E.H. Morris (Stonea) Limited, on the farm.
She died in April of a brain stem tumour aged four.
Alyson, 29, said: “Mikayla always had a smile, she was a cheeky little girl who had a love for life and loved being outdoors, especially being on the farm with daddy as his co-pilot.
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“Even as she began to get more poorly, she never let her illness stop her doing what she wanted – she was a very determined little girl!”
The couple have so far raised more than £16,000 for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH).
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The charity supported Mikayla, her parents and her brother Alfie, two, through what will perhaps be the toughest period of their lives.
Alyson said: “The care we received from EACH at Milton was excellent.”
They had access to support 24 hours a day, a nurse specialist would visit at home and as a family they went to Milton for day care.
“We had hydrotherapy once a week, which Mikayla loved.
“All the staff were friendly and welcoming, and nothing was too much trouble. It’s more than a job. They are caring, compassionate and believe in the work they do.
“Myself and Neil made the decision that we wanted end of life care at Milton so we spent the last six days of her life there.
“Everyone helped make this time as easy and precious as possible.
“Julie the head chef said to us after breakfast one morning that she had made a chocolate cheesecake as she thought we could do with a chocolate fix. Little things like this make the difference.
“Alfie our son was always welcome, as were visitors and other family members. Visits were never restricted. The wellbeing team helped us make memory keepsakes, which we will treasure for ever.
“Having EACH gave us choices which we never thought possible. The staff made the hardest journey we have ever had to make that little bit easier to bear.
“We never felt alone, there was always somebody there who would listen to us. It was a place we could be at home without being at home. We still use support from the hospice, I have counselling sessions which are a real help.
“If EACH wasn’t there I don’t know what we would have done as we really felt we couldn’t be at home when Mikayla passed, it would have been too much.
“They are an essential lifeline for families. There are not enough words to say how thankful we are to EACH.
“This charity will always be close to our hearts and that is why we have decided to do our tractor challenge.”
Backing has come in the form of the blue New Holland power tractor Alyson and Neil will ride, which has been donated by Ely-based G & J Peck Ltd.
There have been other offers of support, most notably from The Coach & Horses in Winterbourne Abbas, south west Dorset, which is to run a fundraising evening when the couple stop over.
With their pink trailer, which features logos of the countless companies that have offered support, they will be an easy spot for motorists.
• Check their progress via their Facebook page.
• There is no transport to return the tractor and trailer. Anyone who can help is asked to contact EACH Cambridgeshire fundraising team 01223 204916 or email@example.com.
• To boost fundraising visit their JustGiving page.