Money raised by readers to save life of Laura Baxter helps fund operation for Northampton dad

Charlie with Georgia. Charlie with Georgia.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013
9:00 AM

Money raised by Hunts Post readers to help save the life of Laura Baxter has ben used to give a 36-year-old dad from Northampton a vital operation.

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It has been a year since we called on Huntingdonshire to rally around Laura, a 27-year-old from St Ives who had a rare cancer, Pseudomyxoma Peritonei (PMP) and needed £25,000 for a specialist operation in Belgium.

Sadly, just weeks after more than £30,000 was raised, Laura died in Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge on November 16.

Since then, Laura’s mother Jackie Baxter and partner Wayne Cooper have donated the money to Ward D9 in Addenbrooke’s, where Laura was treated, the teenage cancer ward at the Cambridge hospital, the Special Care Baby Unit at Hinchingbrooke Hospital, Huntingdon, and to help Charlie Fidler, who was diagnosed with PMP in 2010.

Like Laura, Charlie needed £25,000 for a life-saving operation in Belgium, carried out by specialist PMP surgeon Dr Wim Ceelen.

Wayne, of Black Hill Road, St Ives, was put in touch with Charlie’s partner Katie through the Pseudomyxoma Survivor charity’s Facebook page and donated around £4,000, plus £1,000 gift aid.

As well as the donation, Wayne advised the family about fundraising.

As a result Charlie had his operation in June and is recovering at home with his two-year-old daughter Georgia and Katie’s 13-year-old son Conor.

Katie, 33, said at one point Charlie was given 12 weeks to live as doctors thought he had pancreatic cancer, but the diagnosis was changed to PMP.

She told The Hunts Post: “Charlie has made an amazing recovery from the operation and every day continues to amaze us all, including the doctors and specialists that advised us against going ahead with it. His operation was in excess of 17 hours and the amazing surgeon and team removed 98/99 per cent of the cancer. There where some complications at first due to the length of surgery and it was very touch and go, but what they achieved was nothing short of a miracle.”

Katie added: “I have tried several times to put into words how I feel but no words ever really come close. I’m eternally grateful and overwhelmed and shall do all I can to help anyone else in the same situation as us.

“I will never be able to thank Wayne enough for coming forward and offering to help us – without the money I would not of been able to reach the target in time.”

Wayne added: “The money donated last year has gone on to help a lot of people’s lives.”

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