Walk in memory of tragic Fiona (23) from Langho

ADVENTUROUS: Fiona Watson. (s)
ADVENTUROUS: Fiona Watson. (s)

A SPONSORED walk will be held in the Ribble Valley in memory of a 23-year-old diabetes sufferer who died earlier this year.

Fiona Marie Watson, of Langho, died of diabetes complications in January while working in the ski resort of Meribel, France.

The beauty therapist and former St Augustine’s pupil had type one diabetes and went in to a coma, triggered by a hypoglycemic attack, while asleep.

Fiona attended St Mary’s RC Primary School, Langho, and St Augustine’s RC High School, Billington, before studying beauty therapy at Blackburn College. She then took up a position at Simply The Best in Whalley.

Fiona had been working in France for the luxury chalet company Alp Leisure Ltd since November, after travelling around Australia for eight months.

Her family have organised a 10km sponsored walk on Saturday, April 20th, which will take in the milestones of Fiona’s life. It will set off at 11-30 a.m. from the Knowles Arms, Langho, and at 1 p.m. from St Mary’s RC Church, York Lane, Langho, taking in Billington, Whalley, Barrow and finishing at The Emporium, Clitheroe.

Fiona lived with diabetes from 13 months old, the youngest person at that time in the local area to be diagnosed with diabetes. The initial diagnosis devastated the family, but they adapted their lifestyles and managed blood sugar readings and twice daily insulin injections until Fiona was 20 and able to manage her condition herself.

Fiona, who was also diagnosed with Coeliac Disease at the age of 13 and was dyslexic, led a full and active life and was awarded a Young Achiever Award by Ribble Valley Borough Council during her final year at St Augustine’s.

Fiona’s father Chris Watson (52) said: “Fiona lived an active and adventurous life, doing things most people would not even dream of, such as skydiving, rock climbing and backpacking around Australia.

“We have chosen this walk as it passes places that were important in Fiona’s life, her schools, where she worked and the church where she was baptized and started her life’s journey.”

He added: “Our daughter was taken from us by this dreadful condition despite us doing everything by the book and looking after her properly. The best advice I can give is not to become complacent, because diabetes can happen to anybody, at any age. Our princess, Fiona, had a beautiful smile and a thirst for adventure, she will never be forgotten.”

For more information about the sponsored walk contact Chris Watson at fionaswalk2013@gmail.com, or, to sponsor the walk visit www.justgiving.com/Fiona-Marie-Watson

Any parents of children living with diabetes can visit: www.diabetes.org.uk/Information-for-parents/ and young people living with diabetes can visit: http://www.diabetes.org.uk/MyLife-YoungAdults