Defibrillator bought for Hucknall school as part of Ashfield nurse's efforts in memory of dad

An Ashfield woman has made a heart-felt effort to provide lifesaving equipment to help others in her community, in memory of her dad.

Wednesday, 30th March 2022, 5:09 pm

Through relentless fundraising, Holly Younger, a cardiac nurse at Kingsmill Hospital in Sutton, has managed to buy 50 defibrillators for schools across mainly the Ashfield and Mansfield area.

Forty have already been sited at schools, whilst ten are allocated.

Holly’s 50th milestone was reached recently, with a defibrillator purchased for Holgate Primary School in Hucknall.

Holly Younger

The specialist machines cost around £599 each and are used to restart the heart during a cardiac arrest.

Holly, from Kirkby, started fundraising three years ago, after her dad Leon Smith died on January 28, 2019.

Leon, a ‘dinner man’ at Annesley Primary School, was just 52 when he went into sudden cardiac arrest.

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Holly's dad Leon Smith who died aged 52 after a heart attack

His 28-year-old daughter decided to raise cash for a defibrillator at the school and helped by family and friends, set up the charity ‘Leon’s Legacy.’

Since then, Holly, a keen hockey player, has organised everything from tournaments, raffles, discos and gained grants from organisations including Sutton Rotary Club and Persimmon Homes.

One tournament raised over £2000, split between Leon’s Legacy and the Henry the Brave charity.

Holly said: “I’m thrilled at achieving 50 defibrillators.

Keen hockey player Holly pictured with her mum Linda Smith - tournaments helped raise money for defibrillators.

"I hope to get one in every school, and more in outside in cabinets giving public access.

"When my dad died, I wanted to do something in his memory and to help others.

"He’d be proud, but more likely he’d be telling me to ‘sit still’ as I never stop!”

Holly regularly goes into schools teaching CPR in her spare time.

Holly added “When my dad passed it was hard, it was so unexpected, he wasn’t ill.

“I wasn’t there to help my dad, but he had wonderful people helping him at Annesley, they did everything they could for him, but there was nothing anyone could have done, it was just his time.

"I’ve kept in touch with the school, they are lovely, I take cake in every year on his anniversary.”

Holly is planning a party, with a defibrillator shaped cake and a disco, to celebrate her 50 defibrillator achievement, at Ilkeston Squash Club, on May 21.

All are welcome, donations on the door appreciated.