Sudbury residents, businesses and organisations have kick-started our appeal to help paralysed former charity boss Marion Blower.
The Free Press and town clerk Sue Brotherwood called for donations and fundraising ideas last week to raise £8,600 to pay for an electric wheelchair for Mrs Blower, who broke her neck in a fall in March and has been in hospital ever since.
Her story has touched countless people and nearly £300 has already been donated at the Free Press office and Sudbury town hall by her friends and people she never met, including some individual donations of £100.
“I am very pleased and grateful – times are tight financially for people and we do appreciate this,” said Mrs Blower.
“I have got ongoing health issues and even when I come out of hospital they won’t go away because spinal injuries are very complex. I also have complications with my breathing.”
Mrs Blower retired after 17 years as manager of Sudbury Community Hub in January but has been left paralysed from the chest down after her fall and is currently undergoing treatment in Sheffield.
She has had to give up her home of 42 years in Boxford due to her mobility problems and she is hopeful of moving to the bungalow in Cats Lane, Sudbury, found by her husband Bryn, once she is discharged from hospital.
“If I don’t have to have any more treatment other than therapy, I should be home by mid-November,” she said.
The couple are having the specially-made electric wheelchair fitted in the coming weeks and all the money raised by Free Press readers will go to paying for the equipment to reduce the financial burden on the couple .
“It will be very challenging once I am home as we need to get health care systems in place quickly,” said Mrs Blower.
Mr Blower expressed his gratitude to Free Press readers as well as Mrs Brotherwood for suggesting the appeal.
He said: “We are very pleased that people are coming forward and doing everything they can.”