A heartbroken mother will take part in the famous Glasgow KiltWalk in memory of her beautiful son who passed away last year.
Liam Doherty from Cranford died on April 2, 2021, of Sudden Adult Death Syndrome (SADS).
He was just 19 years of age.
Mum Adele, along with some family and friends, will take part in the walk in April in honour of him and to raise funds for The Mater foundation.
This charity has been chosen after the care and attention they have given to the family since their tragic loss.
“Liam led a simple happy life, working on music with his band White Lighter, playing the PlayStation with his mates, and following his beloved football team Glasgow Celtic,” Adele wrote on her JustGiving fundraising page.
“He didn’t want or look for nothing in life. Liam was a gifted child in his art skills, this was very evident from an early age. His art progressed to be nothing short of outstanding.”
Achieving an A in his leaving Cert Art exams, he knew where he wanted to go with this in life.
However, nothing could have prepared the family for what happened on April 2, last year, or what potentially lay ahead of them.
“This became our journey into a lot of unchartered waters, learning the depths of SADs, trying to understand and process it all,” Adele added.
When a family loses someone so young in adulthood to such a condition, the immediate family are put forward for cardiac testing.
As a result, Adele, Liam Snr and his two sisters, Caoimhe and Lily Grace, began their journey with Mater Foundation.
They first attended the Family Heart Screening Clinic in Dublin last October.
For many families, SADS deaths can be unexplained. However it is estimated that one third of Irish families who have been affected by SADS may have an inherited or genetic heart condition such as Channelopathy.
In short, this is a disease of the electrical system of the heart, the most common problem found on screening is Long QT Syndrome.
“The service we received at the Heart House Clinic has been somewhat exceptional,” stressed Adele.
“When we began our tests as a family back in October, I naively thought that there was nothing to be seen on any of us – we were all fit and healthy people. I was wrong. At present, both Liam’s dad and younger Sister Lily Grace have both presented with small issues of Long QT Syndrome. Without the heart screening tests we received, this would never have been discovered.”
Both Liam and Lily Grace are now undergoing more medical tests with the team in Dublin. They hope to build a bigger family picture with genetic and medical testing to allow the best course of action moving forward for them both.
“We will always be the most grateful family to have received these life saving tests, but the bitter sweet of it all is our boy Liam never got that opportunity.”
The Heart House Clinic is funded by generous donations to the Mater Foundation. “With this in mind, I wanted to do something to thank them for the care my family has received from them. A fundraiser came to mind, and what better way to remember Liam whilst raising funds in his name for such a worthy cause.”
On April 24, Adele and Liam’s sister, Caoimhe, along with Liam’s Aunts and family friends from both Glasgow and Donegal will be taking part in the Glasgow Kiltwalk.
This is a 36 Km walk which begins in Glasgow’s Glasgow Green and finishes at the shores of Balloch in Loch Lomond. The Kiltwalk became the chosen challenge because of Liam’s love for Glasgow and his fond wearing of his tartan trousers!
“This is by no means an easy task, at present us Ladies are building up our walking kms, however the winds and rain are not making it one bit easy,” Adele explained.
“We really hope that you all might donate a little something to this fundraiser. Anything, no matter how small, is greatly appreciated.”
Adele hopes the money they raise can help the Heart House Clinic to help many other families who find themselves in need of their life saving screening tests.
“We truly wish that no other family had to walk in our shoes, but sadly this is just not possible. But, with the help and care they could receive at the Heart House Clinic, it may soften the burden they have to carry.”
If anyone would like to join them on the Kiltwalk, feel free to get in touch with Adele.
To donate, and to contact Adele, log on to their JustGiving fundraising page.