‘Parkinson’s stole years of my father’s life’ – Baldock mum rallies family for fundraising hike up Pen Y Fan in aid of Parkinson’s UK
- Credit: Archant
A Baldock mum whose dad died on Father’s Day after a battle with Parkinson’s disease has rallied her family for a fundraising mountain hike in his memory.
Fiona Baker, whose father Eric Drury died aged 85 in June after living with the disease for about a decade, is set to walk up Pen Y Fan in south Wales later this month in aid of Parkinson’s UK, which works to find a cure and help improve life for those affected by the disease.
She will be accompanied up the 3,000ft peak in the Brecon Beacons by husband Sean and kids Archie, 10, and eight-year-old Bonnie.
“Our aim is to raise as much money as possible,” said Fiona.
“My kids are really excited about the trip up the mountain as well.
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“We’ve had a lot of sponsorship already but it’s difficult to ask people.”
Fiona described how her father had been a very fit and healthy person, but could hardly move after Parkinsons’s had taken its toll.
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“It can strike anybody, whatever lifestyle you have,” she said.
“There are no safeguards against it. Dad always kept himself fit and was always busy doing something.
“The last three years were very difficult. He could not move his legs at all, he was completely bedbound and could barely move his arms. He had difficulty swallowing.
“It is such an awful disease – there is medication available for the early stages to keep sufferers as mobile as possible, but after a time this no longer works and the person gets progressively worse. They know what is coming and there is nothing they can do to stop it.
“It’s awful to see somebody get worse and worse and become locked inside their body. Parkinson’s stole the last few years of my father’s life.”
The fundraising began at former British Aerospace design engineer Eric’s funeral, where a collection box raised £339 for Parkinson’s UK.
The sponsorship has continued online, where almost £200 had been raised as the Comet went to press.
The Parkinson’s UK group hike up Pen Y Fan is set for September 17.
For more and to donate see uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fbaker.