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Family raise £20,000 to say thank you for Lucie’s lifesaving care

30 November 2011

A charity golf day organised by the grateful grandparents of a little girl called Lucie Lewis whose life was saved by staff at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital has raised more than £20,000 for The Pluto Appeal to purchase a £1.5 million surgical robot.

Photo: Mel and Pauline Lewis, whose granddaughter’s life was saved by the expertise of staff on the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, with Rebecca McLoughlin of The Pluto Appeal (Inset: Lucie Lewis)

A charity golf day organised by the grateful grandparents of a little girl called Lucie Lewis whose life was saved by staff at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital has raised more than £20,000 for The Pluto Appeal to purchase a £1.5 million surgical robot.

This hi-tech piece of equipment will benefit children and babies from all over London and the South East who need surgery.

More than 100 people came to Westerham Golf Club in Kent for a day of golf followed by a dinner and auction, all in aid of The Pluto Appeal.

Mel Lewis, Lucie’s grandfather, explains “The reason we decided to fundraise for The Pluto Appeal was because our granddaughter Lucie was born at just 26 weeks and weighed less than 2lbs.

“Lucie was born on 26 July last year at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital and was immediately put into an incubator on the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit with so many wires and machines attached in order to give her the very best chance of survival.

“The next few months were a very stressful and traumatic time for our family, especially our son Richard and his wife Katie.

“Lucie needed to have four operations but like so many of the babies in the neonatal unit she was not strong enough to be taken to an operating theatre and so the surgeons came and operated on her in the unit.

“The incredible work they do is totally beyond our comprehension. Lucie could have fitted into the palm of our hands and the thought of her undergoing an operation was something we dreaded but we knew had to be done.”

After months of recovery, Lucie was finally able to go home just before Christmas 2010. She is now 15 months old and doing well.

Pauline Lewis, Lucie’s grandmother, says: “We were all so grateful to the surgical and nursing teams at the hospital that we felt we wanted to try to do something that would help other children in similar circumstances.

“And so we decided to help The Pluto Appeal to raise money for them to buy a groundbreaking piece of equipment dedicated for use by paediatric surgeons at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital.”

Other members of the family have also helped to fundraise on behalf of the Appeal. Lucie’s dad, Richard, ran the Royal Parks Half Marathon recently and raised £2,000 and Lucie’s other grandparents raised £5,000 by holding a 1st birthday fundraising tea for her. Other friends have also taken on challenge events and so, collectively, Lucie’s family and friends have raised more than £30,000 for The Pluto Appeal.