A SPECIAL concert has been held in memory of a young Lisburn woman who died from sudden cardiac arrest.
Last Thursday Maze Presbyterian Church hosted the concert with 'The Leading Ladies in memory of Michelle Sinclair, who died in January 2007. Michelle had just had her 20th birthday and was in her second year at university when she suffered sudden cardiac arrest and died shortly afterwards in hospital. It transpired after her death that she had an undetected heart condition.
Ever since Michelle's parents, Trevor and Kim, have been involved with the work of CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young) which promotes screening for young people at risk of cardiac problems and it was decided that proceeds from the concert should go to the organisation.
Kim said: As a family we sincerely thank all members of our church who worked so hard organising what was a very special evening in memory of our daughter Michelle. "Even though it was at times extremely emotional the Leading Ladies and their band made it a wonderful enjoyable and entertaining night.
'A big thank you to all our family and friends who gave so generously and therefore have supported the tireless work of CRY in Northern Ireland raising awareness of these very tragic and often unnecessary young sudden cardiac deaths," she said. Kim continued: "We have excellent screening facilities at Jordanstown University and therefore would appeal to all parents - 'please make an appointment get your child/teenager screened'. Unfortunately we can't have Michelle back but wouldn't it be great if no other family had to go through the pain and heartbreak that comes with losing a young fit an healthy child. Already there are too many of us and as responsible parents we need to do something now to prevent many more young lives being lost."
The Leading Ladies treated the audience to a wide selection of songs and the audience appreciated the mix of old and new hits.
Over 300 attended the concert, many of them family members and friends of the Sinclair's. Seven of Michelle's friends from university in England also flew in to remember their friend in this special way.
The evening was drawn to a close by Lagan Valley MP Jeffrey Donaldson who thanked everyone for attending and The Leading Ladies for their entertainment. He encouraged them all to support the work of CRY by lobbying their local MLAs to introduce screening for all young people. He himself is a strong supporter of CRY. A total of around £2,000 has been raised so far.