Sunrise, Sunset, for caring St Albans sister in charity walk
PUBLISHED: 21:00 10 May 2016
A St Albans mother who completed a 15-hour sunrise to sunset walk at Heartwood Forest on Sunday raised more than £1,800 for her brother’s post heart transplant care in the USA.
Tracey McCarrick’s brother Roger was born with transposition of the great arteries, a condition where the two main blood vessels leaving the heart, the pulmonary artery and the aorta, are swapped over.
The walk was to fund his care after his life-saving operation in March, as despite having comprehensive health insurance where he lives in California, his aftercare was not covered.
Tracey said: “I wanted to do something difficult and memorable so the sunrise to sunset challenge seemed a good idea six weeks ago when I was planning things.
“The extended period proved slightly less appealing when I had a crisis moment nine hours into the challenge, and the aches and pains were starting to get me down, but the sponsors, my companions on the day and my brother kept me going until the end.”
Roger, 49, has had several corrective procedures in his life but earlier this year his condition deteroriated rapidly.
Tracey explained: “In February this year, he got pneumonia and went straight to the top of the list for a new heart, it all happened very quickly.”
So his family both sides of the pond got to work trying to raise the (US)$50,000 needed for his post-op costs.
IT engineer Roger, dad to daughter Razelle, 25, and son, Mars, 19, is said to be so humbled that people are fundraising for him and giving to his cause.
Mother-of-one Tracey – who chose the Sandridge forest for the fundraiser because of its size and name being relevant to the cause – started at 5.32am, with her copywriter husband Matthew King accompanying her for the first three hours and several friends and family members joining throughout the day until the finish at 8.26pm
It was a poignant date for the family as it was also Tracey, Roger and their two sisters’ late father’s birthday.
Newly-qualified solicitor Tracey said: “It was incredible, I didn’t walk alone at all. I had so much support from my walking companions and followers on Facebook which really kept my spirits alive.”
“I’m just so very grateful to all those who donated.”
Now the challenge is over, Tracey hasn’t got much time to rest as she is going out to visit Roger later this month to be his full-time carer for a few weeks.
To add to her total go to justgiving.com and search ‘I heart Roger McCarrick’.