Tragic Elliot’s brave family turns heartbreak into hope

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A SUMMER fete was held in memory of a little boy who died unexpectedly, when he went for his afternoon sleep.

Elliot Kerslake’s special day was held at the Myrtle Tavern in Meanwood, and was a celebration of his short life as well as a time for family and friends to come together and mark what would have been his fourth birthday.

He died in March 2013 aged two-and-a-half.

Despite the best efforts of his dad John, paramedics and hospital staff, he could not be saved,

His family, from Shadwell, are still waiting for an explanation as to why their healthy little boy died so suddenly.

An inquest into his death is due to be held in October, 19 months after he died.

His parents set up a charity Elliot’s Footprint and they are calling for improved bereavement services, after having to seek out and arrange support for themselves after their beloved son’s death.

Elliot’s mum Andrea said: “Everyday is still like a massive challenge. There are lots of milestones to cope with. He would have been due to start school in September. Elliot would have been four at the end of May, so this was a summer belated birthday event, we knew Elliot would have loved.

“He adored fire engines, Lego and music and we ensured all these were included.”

Andrea added: “We know we cannot take away the pain and the devastation of the loss a child, but what we want to do is try to offer a gateway that even if it makes a difference to one family, then that for us is the spirit of Elliot that we are taking forward.”

Elliot’s Footprint charity was set up in memory of Elliot, who was two-and-a-half when he died unexpectedly.

Now his parents Andrea and John have pledged to help other parents who lose a child unexpectedly after health professional told them losing a child is the ‘worst thing that can happen’ to anyone.

They want to ensure plans are in place when crisis happens and people in need of help can get the support they need.

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