Simon Goacher raises over £6000 for the UK Sepsis Trust, a Charity Very Close to his Heart

Publish date: 25/10/2018

Undertaking the Birmingham Half Marathon in memory and honour of his partner, Sam; Simon Goacher of Weightmans, corporate partner of LLG, speaks openly about the devastating impact sepsis has had upon his life.

"My partner Sam died of Sepsis in February this year. It came as an utter shock. We had just celebrated her 49th birthday and I had begun thinking about what I could do as a special surprise to celebrate her 50th. She was fit and healthy, exercising every day and had just started a new job. We thought that we had lots to look forward to.

Sam became ill on the Sunday with flu like symptoms. She deteriorated but returned home from the doctors on the Monday and Tuesday reassured that it was just a virus. But she got even worse on the Wednesday she was admitted to hospital and on the Friday she died.

That is how sudden Sepsis can be, devastating healthy, happy lives in almost the blink of an eye. 44,000 people die from Sepsis in the UK every year, more than breast, bowel and prostate cancer combined.

Like many people I had vaguely heard of Sepsis before Sam died. But I had no idea how deadly it could be nor how important early diagnosis and treatment is to chances of survival.

It is impossible to describe the impact that the loss of Sam has had. My happy life was shattered into a million pieces and it feels like I will never put them back together again. I am lucky in that I have received incredible support from family, friends and colleagues which has helped me get through the last eight months.

Shortly after Sam died some of my oldest friends said that they would like to do something in memory of Sam. When I mentioned this to other family and friends they agreed that it would be fitting to do something to raise funds for the UK Sepsis Trust. Initially the suggestion was the Royal Parks half marathon but there were not enough places available for everyone to take part who wanted to so we went for the Great Birmingham Run, another half marathon.

Initially I said that I would support rather than take part. I have run half marathons in the distant past but since recent hip and knee replacements I have been advised I shouldn't run. As the event loomed closer though I wanted to participate and decided to enter and walk the distance. My eldest daughter Kate and my friend from school Chris said they would walk with me.

So on 14th October,15 of us lined up to take part in a very, very wet Birmingham, alongside 7,000 others all with their own reasons for taking part. We ranged in age from 17 to 48 and with a similar wide range in ability and training. But we all managed to finish through the downpour with finishing times ranging from 1 hour 56 mins to 3 hours 31 mins (the slowest times being the three of us walking!).

Most importantly we raised over £6,000 for the UK Sepsis Trust. The Trust raises awareness and provides training to health professionals to improve diagnosis and treatment. It also provides support for those affected by Sepsis.

I was so touched by my friends saying that they wanted to do this in memory of Sam. We are all incredibly grateful for people who have donated and supported us. People can still donate at: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sophie-b1

More importantly though if you or a loved one feels like you have flu this winter but it feels worse than anything you've ever had before, just ask could it be Sepsis and if you think it could get medical support urgently – it could save a life".

Simon Goacher

Editorial Note:

LLG would like to extend its heartfelt condolences to Simon, his family, and all the friends and colleagues who touched Sam's life.