A Worksop tot stepped out on his own sponsored trek to raise money to replace a memorial bench for lost babies that was targeted by heartless arsonists.
Marshall Tyrell might only be 19-months-old, but he is already putting his newfound walking skills to good use, toddling one mile for the benefit of Worksop-based charity JOEL.
Volunteers at the charity, which helps Bassetlaw families affected by the loss of a baby, were left devastated when one of their memorial benches was torched at Langold Country Park in June.
Marshall’s mum, Sarah, became a member of JOEL after losing baby Ashley in 2013.
She jumped at the chance to fundraise for a new memorial bench with Marshall who is a “rainbow baby”, a term used by the charity to describe a baby born following a loss.
Marshall walked one mile down Rayton Lane, Worksop and will also complete another mile on holiday at the Isle of Wight.
Sarah said: “I have been part of the JOEL support group for four years, I’d go as far as to say that JOEL saved me after losing a baby.
“It’s a bit of a double-edged sword. Nobody wants to lose a baby, but I’ve made so many friends through JOEL and am so glad support like that exists. I went on to have a lovely pregnancy.
“When the bench was burnt down, it just made me so angry. I’d been to the open day when the bench was unveiled and seeing it vandalised was upsetting for all of us.
“Marshall loves walking, so I thought- why not go on a little walk and raise money for a new bench?
“Donations have poured in. People have been so generous. We have raised a lot more than expected.”
You can still donate to Marshall’s crowdfunding page at: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/sarah-tyrrelljones.
To find out more about JOEL and the support they offer visit joeltcp.org or www.facebook.com/Joelthecompletepackage.