“Thomas was a delightful little boy, with bright ginger hair, the biggest blue eyes and the most infectious of giggles. He was mischievous and so loving.
Thomas had a number of complex health issues and sadly, he passed away on 17th November 2023 aged just 11 years old.
Red Sky Foundation made contact with us in June 2023, and offered to send Thomas to CBeebies Land for his last wish. Red Sky will always have a special place in our hearts because of this, fulfilling his last wish means the world to us.
Also, we have a Red Sky defibrillator gifted in Thomas’ memory for the village that he lived in.
Following his death, Thomas’s family recognised a lack of financial support for bereaved families, especially as any benefits claimed for a disabled child stop on the day that they die. Not only do the families have to mourn the death of their son/daughter but also have the added worry of how they are going to pay their bills. We decided that this needs to change! Our Thomas would like to support bereaved families with mortgage payments / heating vouchers / food vouchers to make things easier.
Thomas’s sister, Leia, also approached her family and said that she also felt that there was no support for siblings when a child dies. While her parents left the hospital with a memory box containing Thomas’s hair, hand prints and footprints, Leia left without even a leaflet to advise her where she could get support if she needed it. From there, ‘Leia’s Gift in Memory of Our Thomas’ was created. Leia put together a box of items to give to bereaved children to help them through the early days of grief and beyond. The aim is to have these boxes available in every hospital and hospice in the UK so that they can be given out when they are needed the most.
We are delighted that Red Sky Foundation have joined us to ensure that bereaved children and parents can be supported following the death of a child. There are currently no benefits in place to support bereaved families by the UK government or charities within the North East offering this support.”