9:31am Thursday 28th July 2011
By Abigail Woodcock
FAMILY and friends of a 24-year-old woman who died of a rare lung condition have raised £40,000 for a charity supporting other victims.
TV researcher Lucy Clarke of Philip Avenue, Swanley, lost her two-year battle with pulmonary hypertension in April 2008.
She left behind her parents, Calvin and Debbie, her sister Naomi, 21, and her brother John, 30.
Since her death, her friends and family have been raising money for Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA), which is looking for a cure for the condition.
Debbie said: “So many people have wanted to do something and get involved.
“It’s amazing how things have snowballed- it’s played an important part in making sense of things.”
Lucy’s boyfriend, Steve, raised £3,000 by trekking up Ben Nevis and a further £15,000 on a sponsored row along the Thames to Oxford.
Her friend Kathryn Stoneback ran the London marathon in April in her memory, raising £3,800, while family have organised concerts and other special events.
Debbie added: “We had to make something positive out of what happened, and we push ourselves that bit harder to achieve things.
”People feel so helpless and they want to do something to make a difference, especially as Lucy was so inspiring.”
Debbie told News Shopper she was so encouraged by the way people have fundraised for PHA, she was motivated to work for a charity.
She currently volunteers for the Swanley Therapy Centre, a small charity that offers oxygen therapy to people with neurological conditions.
The 54-year-old said: “I don’t think you ever get over a loss like Lucy, but working for a charity has given me a more positive attitude.
“You come to a crossroads and you can go either way- you feel sorry for yourself or you find a way to move forward.
“You rely on the strength you’re given.”
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