A FAMILY devastated by the death of a mum-of-three when she was just 27 have been keeping her legacy alive.
In her dying months, Kelly Stoker from Fence Houses raised thousands of pounds for Macmillan Cancer Support as a thank you for their care.
She fought a six month battle with cervical cancer before passing away in June last year.
Now, for the second year running, her family have held a fund-raising day in her memory.
Friends and family - including Kelly’s sons Lewis, seven, Clayton, four, and Reece, three - took part in a sponsored walk and family fun day at The Station pub in Fence Houses.
Kelly’s nephews Cameron, Callum and Riley Crosby and family friend Kelvin Errington also joined in the fund-raising activities.
They managed to raise £1,600, bringing the total raised in Kelly’s name over the past 18 months to just under £6,000.
Kelly’s dad Allan Stoker said: “I think Kelly would be over the moon with the money that’s been raised in her memory. We’d like to thank everyone involved, including all the locals at The Station.”
Among the fund-raisers was Bill the border collie and his owner Maggie Gass who managed to raise £183 on their own.
Michelle Muir, Macmillan fund-raising manager for County Durham, said: “In County Durham there are 10,000 people living with and beyond cancer - that would fill Durham Cathedral 10 times over.
“Money raised from events like this is so important, as we rely solely on donations from the public to fund our services. I have supported Allan and his family for the past year. They are an amazing family, really getting involved in lots of different fund-raising in memory of Kelly.”
Kelly, who lived with partner Liam Wood, was diagnosed with cervical cancer in January last year and was treated with a six-week course of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and brachytherapy – internal radiation.
But it was unsuccessful in ridding her body of the disease, and in May that year doctors broke the news that the cancer had spread rapidly to her lungs and nothing could be done to save her life.
Though her family knew they had limited time left with her, they didn’t expect the devoted mum to die just a fortnight after she was told her illness was terminal.
She died in St Benedict’s Hospice, at its former base in Monkwearmouth, surrounded by her family. Just days before Kelly’s death, she presented a cheque to Macmillan nurses who had helped her, in a bid to help cancer patients in the future.