Portsmouth preschool volunteer’s death sparks defibrillator fundraising campaign

A NURSERY has launched a defibrillator appeal fund after the death of a ‘much loved friend of the school’.

Saturday, 8th December 2018, 1:25 pm
Updated Thursday, 28th March 2019, 11:35 am
A school has installed a defibrillator after much loved volunteer, Stephen Urry, recently died of a heart attack.

Parade Community Preschool volunteer Stephen Urry, 54, died suddenly at home after a heart attack on November 25.

Preschool manager, Cathy Robinson, said: ‘He was a lovely jolly person who will be greatly missed. The loss of Stephen is indescribable – he will always be missed.’

Stephen was the long term partner of the school’s deputy manager, Jayne Whatling and a regular visitor to the school. He enjoyed joking with the children and would often carry out voluntary work at the school.

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Cathy said: ‘He would help out with DIY at the school and with the construction of play equipment for the children.

‘He also took on the role of our Preschool Father Christmas which the children loved.’

The school now hope to raise a minimum of £600 to purchase a defibrillator which could potentially save the the lives of people who in the future may suffer a heart attack.

Cathy said: ‘We were already discussing the idea of installing a defibrillator but it is so much more poignant now after what happened to Stephen.

‘It shows how vital this piece of equipment can be. If Stephen had access to a defibrillator at home then his life may have been saved.’

The school has organised a raffle, with prizes of chocolates and Christmas gifts, and set up a just giving page to raise the required funds.

Cathy added: ‘We have so far raised £430. We hope to raise more than the £600 target and use the additional money to help Stephen’s grandson’s school also purchase a defibrillator.’

Due to the Kipling Road preschool’s location in close proximity to Northern Parade Infant and Junior Schools and Family Hub, Cathy believes the new defibrillator can potentially provide life-saving treatment to people working in all four establishments.

‘In an ideal world, there should be a defibrillator in every public building and school,’ said Cathy.

Anyone who would like to make a donation should go to justgiving.com/crowdfunding/paradepreschool2000