Parents of baby Carter Cookson thank South Shields community after 'phenomenal' support for their son and family

Baby Carter Cookson was just over three weeks old when he died.

By Debra Fox
Wednesday, 23 January, 2019, 12:44

But in that short time, he touched thousands of hearts across South Shields, the wider North East region, and the country.

Carter gained his angel wings on Saturday, after just 25 days with his family.

Now his parents, Sarah and Chris Cookson, have spoken of the incredible love and support of those living in their hometown, South Shields, and how much people's thoughts and prayers meant to their family, and their son.

Speaking on ITV News Tyne Tees, dad Chris said: "When something happens in South Shields everyone pulls together.

Carter Cookson died on Saturday, January 19. Pictures: Sarah and Chris Cookson.

"We've had darts teams doing cake sales, there's been friends and families doing cake sales, there's been shops with our buckets. Everything going, there's been something going on.

"We've had the football teams doing the Find a Heart for Carter, they've had a silence for Carter, school kids are doing 'wear blue days' for Carter and that just shows how close South Shields is. It is together, it has been in the past and it will be going forward in the future.

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"It's got such a close bond, it's phenomenal, it's a phenomenal town, the community, the support is absolutely amazing."

In 2013, the Cooksons tragically lost their first son Charlie, who was two-and-a-half.

The couple said the support from South Shields and beyond is "phenomenal".

The tot suffered from a range of health problems and following his death, Sarah and Chris set up a foundation in his name.

To date, The Charlie Cookson Foundation has helped dozens of families with seriously ill children.

Following Carter's death, the couple said they wanted to offer their baby's organs in a bid to save another's life, but there were no babies the same size as him in the country who needed them.

They have spoken about the importance of organ donation, which they hope will become a legacy in their son's name., and encourage more people to join the register.

Sarah and Chris Cookson set up The Charlie Cookson Foundation in memory of their first son. It supports the families of seriously ill children.

Sarah added: "When you have a town like South Shields and beyond it does make you think, people are just so big-hearted and for three weeks of being here and having the impact on people who never met him just seeing what we would post about him and felt how we felt about him.

"He's just greatly loved and I think it's more so for the fact of how he's going to continue to help others. I don't think he'll ever be forgotten."