Coleraine couple’s memory boxes tribute to baby son

Hannah Kirkpatrick and her partner Markwith representatives of the Causeway Maternity Unit. The donations they received enabled them to purchase Sands memory boxes. INCR 50-741-CON
Hannah Kirkpatrick and her partner Markwith representatives of the Causeway Maternity Unit. The donations they received enabled them to purchase Sands memory boxes. INCR 50-741-CON

A Coleraine couple struck by tragedy have found the strength and fortitude to fund raise for the Causeway Maternity Unit.

Hannah Kirkpatrick and her partner Mark Connor lost their baby son Harry in October 2015 following his premature birth.

Despite their huge loss - Hannah also lost another little boy, John, in 2013 - and in the midst of grief, they decided to help others in a similar position through a ‘bonus ball’ initiative.

The donations they received enabled them to purchase Sands (Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Society) memory boxes for other bereaved families to store precious memories of the short time they had with their baby.

Thanking everyone who supported them, Mark said: “ We sadly lost our little boy Harry last October. He was stillborn. We got a memory box for all his little things so we could always have them which was a great support to us. We decided we would raise money to get more of these boxes for parents who would sadly go through the same thing as us.

“We did a bonus ball for a Northern Ireland limited edition Euros pint glass. We raised £335 and with this money we supplied memory boxes, memory booklets, teddy bears, baby blankets and hats, hand and footprint kits and various bereavement packs and information.

“We just would like to thank everyone who bought numbers for the draw and to those who also donated without even getting a number.”

Sensitive, thoughtful care cannot take away the pain of a family who loses a baby at any age or gestation in pregnancy, but it may provide some comfort in the months and years to come.

It is recognised that a compassionate and sensitive approach throughout all the procedures and processes surrounding death can impact positively on the grieving process.

The staff at Causeway Maternity extended their sincere thanks and gratitude to Hannah and Mark for their thoughtful donation.