Belfast Telegraph

Grieving Northern Ireland mums campaign to keep memory of daughters alive

By Cate McCurry

Two inspiring mothers have spoken of how the fight to keep their daughters' legacy alive has helped them to cope with the grief of losing them.

Christina Glenn and Rosemary Day both face the daily heartache of life without their beautiful daughters.

The mothers, whose stories feature in this month's Northern Woman magazine, told of how they found comfort in working to help save the lives of others.

Brave Army medic Channing Day from Comber died in a hail of bullets while serving in Afghanistan.

She was on her way to deliver first aid lessons to members of the indigenous Afghan police force in the Nahr-e Saraj district in Helmand Province when her patrol came under attack on the morning of October 24, 2012.

She was the third British servicewoman to lose her life since the beginning of the Afghan conflict in 2001.

Her family, including mum Rosemary, father Leslie (56), brother Aaron (27) and sisters Laken (28) and Lauren (31) are now battling to ensure war veterans are getting the support they need to overcome mental health problems

The Day family have led an incredibly successful campaign to raise funds in aid of Combat Stress - the mental health charity working with veterans and families dealing with post traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety.

To date, over £70,000 has been donated to the Combat Stress cause.

Like Mrs Day, Christina Glenn faces a similar heartache.

Her world was turned upside down forever, when her 23-year-old daughter Sorcha passed away from cervical cancer.

In June 2013, Sorcha requested a smear test from her GP, but was refused.

It wasn't until a month later that she was finally given the test, but by then it was too late.

She was diagnosed with cervical cancer in September 2013 and died in her boyfriend's arms after collapsing at the Foyle Hospice on October 2014.

"I am not, nor will I ever be the person I was at the time of Sorcha's terminal diagnosis," Mrs Glenn said.

She has vowed to continue the fight to keep her daughter's legacy alive.

With the help of Sorcha's father, Vincent, brothers and sister, along with a host of friends, family members and fellow campaigners, Mrs Glenn has continued Sorcha's fight.

To date, a petition calling for the NHS to provide smear tests on demand, regardless of age, has raised over 118,000 signatures.

"We carry on what Sorcha started," she added.

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