10k walk in memory of John Scott who died in home fire in Linden Way, Pennington, raises over £1,500 for Hampshire & Isle of Wight Air Ambulance
FRIENDS and family completed a fundraising walk in memory of a popular pensioner who died following a fire at his Pennington home.
The 10km challenge supported the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance charity as its helicopter was among resources that responded to the emergency in which 84-year-old John Scott lost his life.
As reported in the A&T, firefighters rescued John as flames engulfed the bungalow in which he lived with his wife Christine, in Linden Way around 7.30pm on 11th October.
Having been handed over to paramedics after receiving emergency care from the crews, however, he was pronounced dead at the scene.
The Hampshire and Isle of Wight air ambulance had landed on the nearby Pennington recreation ground.
Lily Jones, a close friend of the family, decided to set up the walk to celebrate John’s life and thank medics for their efforts to save him.
“I spent a lot of time with John and Christine since I was a child,” she told the A&T.
“They were my grandparents’ best friends, and they were like an extra set of grandparents.
“I just wanted to do something positive out of a tragic situation.”
Thanking all those who took part, she said: “John would definitely have been bursting with pride that his granddaughter did the walk as she’s only nine and it’s quite a distance.”
Retired engineer John lived in Pennington his whole life and became known to many residents who often saw him out walking his dog.
“He was such a kind man,” Lily recalled. “He was quite a quiet man, but so sweet natured. He always showed kindness, even if it was to a stranger, and he would always reach out to help.”
The air ambulance had already been a cause close to Lily’s heart after it responded to an accident in which her grandfather, Roy Drodge, died about 10 years ago.
Having set up an online fundraising page and spread the word via social media, she was delighted with the walk’s turnout of 30 people on Sunday 14th November – two days after John’s funeral.
Those taking part included his daughter Lucy and his nine-year-old granddaughter Alice who had travelled from Chandler’s Ford.
Having set off from the Ferryman pub in Undershore Road, the route took in the monument and the fields of East End, and Norley Wood.
Returning to the pub just over two hours later, they were thanked by Christine who joined them for a roast lunch.
“I don’t think Christine wanted a big wake as it would have been too emotional,” Lily continued.
“It was much nicer for her to have it on that day rather than after the funeral as it was more of a celebration of his life.”
Donations can still be made to the sponsorship page at justgiving.com/fundraising/lily-jones16
It has already beaten its £1,000 target.
The air ambulance charity relies on donations to keep its lifesaving helicopter in the air, with daily running costs of £15,000.