Search

Tributes as Ormesby boy loses fight

PUBLISHED: 11:40 16 April 2010 | UPDATED: 17:28 30 June 2010

TOLD when he was still just a few months old that their perfect looking baby boy would not live beyond a year, parents Paul and Michelle Howard cherished every moment with George.

TOLD when he was still just a few months old that their perfect looking baby boy would not live beyond a year, parents Paul and Michelle Howard cherished every moment with George.

The plucky lad - whose journeys around his home village of Ormesby were constantly halted by well-wishers stopping for a chat - defied the gloomy prognosis seven times and spent three precious months with new baby sister Ruby. His plight dealing with rare and complicated health problems inspired fundraising across the borough, helping to buy equipment to aid him as he grew.

This week, his parents stepped forward to thank everyone for their rallying help, good wishes and continued support following George's death last Thursday.

The funeral on Wednesday is planned as a bright, colourful, celebration for a little boy who in almost eight years took them to new places and motivated others to help.

Speaking from the couple's West Avenue home, his mother this week described him as “a charismatic little soul” and thanked everyone for their fundraising efforts over the years, including beard shaves, fun days, sponsored walks and marathons.

She said the couple had been heartened by the efforts of well-wishers who had contributed to their charity George's Gifts, and pledged to carry on fundraising to help other local children in hospital or at home, in George's name.

George, whose rare condition (Leigh's Disease) hampered his development, died in his parent's arms at Gorleston's James Paget University Hospital as complications linked with a chest infection set in.

“It was peaceful,” his mother said. “He had probably deteriorated more than we realised because we saw him every day. He was getting sleepier and not enjoying things so much. As much as we want him here, we do not want him here suffering. He was given a year to live but he had eight, and he packed so much into them.

“We have met so many people through George and done so many things that we probably would not have done. He was such a charismatic little soul and people would always stop and talk to him. So many people have raised so much money over the years and we just want to say thank-you.”

Mrs Howard was also keen to thank staff at Ward 10.

His parents' quest to find treatments that would help George took them to East Grinstead for private therapy that focussed on massage techniques. The couple did everything they could to enhance his life experience, Mr Howard giving up his career as a legal executive to care for George.

The couple intend to go ahead with a fundraising kayak trip planned for the summer.

George's funeral is on Wednesday at 2.45pm at St Margaret's Church, Ormesby. Family flowers only, donations to George's Gifts. All welcome.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Great Yarmouth Mercury. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Great Yarmouth Mercury