Pupils walk for friend who died 12 years ago

First published in Droitwich News

MORE than 160 people took part in a walk in memory of a boy who lost his battle against cancer 12 years ago.

Alistair Wainwright would have turned 18 on Monday, April 30 and family and friends united in a fundraising walk on Friday, April 20 to mark the occasion.

His mother Deborah said she was “truly staggered” his school friends offered to organise a walk in his memory.

Deborah and Nigel Wainwright, of Charles Dickens Close, Droitwich, lost their six-year-old son Alistair in May 2000, after a year-long battle against a brain tumour.

Since his death, they have raised more than £40,000 for paediatric brain tumour research at the Birmingham Children’s Hospital in conjunction with Birmingham University.

Over the years, many fundraising events have been held for Alistair’s Appeal and they have received countless donations from people who have been affected by his story.

Eighteen-year-old friends Matt Ramage and Alice Spearing-Brown, who knew Alistair when they attended Chawson First School together and were five and six when he died, came up with the idea of the walk in celebration of his birthday.

The walk from Droitwich High School to Chawson First School raised money for Birmingham Children’s Hospital and Acorns Children’s Hospice in Alistair’s memory.

Mrs Wainwright said she couldn’t believe it when she got the call from Matt’s mum Diane.

“I was truly staggered,” she said. “It was one of those great days.

“To think that they were only five and six when Alistair died and remember him enough to want to do this and sort it out themselves rather than waiting for someone else to do it – I’m impressed and delighted.

“You would think such a short life wouldn’t have such a big impact but people don’t forget – particularly when it’s children – they want to carry on and do things.”

Matt’s mum Diane said Alistair was still very much in his friends’ memories.

She said: “They’ve got pictures of him on their phones and some of the lads have photos in the wallets.

“It was a big event when he died.

“They wanted to celebrate Alistair’s 18th and try and help another child get to 18.”

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