A FAMILY strode out to clock up two million steps in memory of their mother — who died after a five-week battle in intensive care from coronavirus.
Mum-of-one Emily Wilkinson (28) said she and her sister Charlotte Longhorn (31) had wanted to do something to remember their mother Carolyn Joy Linkens, who was from Thorpe Hesley, and celebrate her life a year on from her death.
The sisters, alongside Emily’s husband Ben and Charlotte’s husband Chris, decided to walk two million steps in just 30 days — the length of time Carolyn was in hospital — to raise funds for The Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity.
Naming their challenge Margot Marches to Millions, after Emily’s daughter Margot (six months), the family completed their tough task with a day to spare.
Clocking up a total of 2,028,986 steps, the family smashed their £500 fundraising target and have raised £3,127 so far.
Emily, head of lower school at The Willows School in Thurcroft, said: “Thank you to everyone for all the donations and support — it means more than words can ever express and will make such a difference to so many families and patients at the hospital.
“We all really enjoyed the task and wanted to do something that would challenge us as well as doing something positive for a good cause and make some new memories as a family.
“Although it’s not easy losing somebody so special — what a way to celebrate mum’s life a year on and make Margot realise how amazing her granny Caz was and how much she loved her.”
Carolyn died on May 9 last year aged 53, after having spent five weeks in intensive care at Rotherham Hospital after testing positive for Covid-19.
“The day mum went into hospital was the day we had told her we were expecting Margot, and we know that she would have been an amazing granny,” added Emily.
“The staff in critical care gave up everything to be like family to my mum before she passed away and when we couldn’t be there ourselves due to the lockdown restrictions.
“The amazing care she received really meant the world to us, which is why we decided that every year, to celebrate mum’s life we’ll do a fundraising challenge for our local NHS charity, to give something back to those who helped her when we were unable to.”
Funds raised by the family are being put towards a custom-made glass sculpture for Rotherham Hospital’s new snowdrop memorial garden.
The memorial will be crafted in coloured glass reminiscent of the rainbow which represented solidarity to the NHS during the pandemic.
To make a donation to the family’s appeal page, visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/emily-wilkinson9.