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Monday, 28 July 2014

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Inspirational Ulverston girl Alice remembered one year on

YESTERDAY was the first anniversary of the passing of inspirational Ulverston teenager Alice Pyne.

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ALICE PYNE

The loving younger sister of Alice Pyne has written a moving account about spending the first year without her sibling.

Courageous Alice was only just 17 when she passed away a year ago. 

The Ulverston girl was a charity founder, campaigner and fundraiser who selflessly worked to help others when she was terminally ill.

Alice fought Hodgkin’s Lymphoma for more than five years and her greatest wish was to make a difference for others.

She unexpectedly attracted a huge global following when a blog and bucket list meant for her friends and family went viral online.

Alice achieved her dream to establish Alice’s Escapes, a charity providing holidays in South Cumbria for seriously ill children and their families. She passed away days before her first caravan arrived which many families have gone on to enjoy.

Her campaigning inspired thousands to join the bone marrow register with the Anthony Nolan charity, has saved lives and helped changed legislation to save more people.

Alice’s 15-year-old sister, Milly, a young ambassador for Alice’s Escapes, has taken over the writing of entries on Alice’s world famous blog.

Today she will post ‘A Year Without Alice’ in which she says: “As she became sicker, I watched as she faced everything with a smile on her face.”

Milly also says how she is following Alice’s wishes for her to “make a difference.”

Alice and Milly’s mum, Vicky, said: “It’s nice that Milly has kept the blog going. Alice sent Milly an email with the link to her blog and the passcodes and she wrote ‘why don’t you write on my blog when I’m gone because you are really good at writing’.”

Today on the anniversary the family plan to climb Coniston Old Man with Alice’s dog Mabel and family dog Lottie.

Alice has left letters, messages and gifts for her family and friends for now and in the future, which means so much to everyone. There will be a letter for her mum, sister and dad, Simon, to open tomorrow.

Alice also left lists with wishes for charities, including “no silly rules”. She even made sure Mabel’s dog insurance was all paid for.

Mrs Pyne said: “Alice was so gentle and she cared with a passion about people.

“There was no artificialness about her, you got what you saw with Alice, she was very genuine.

“How can you be like Alice, dying but be so joyful? There’s not a person who met Alice who would describe here as miserable, she was so for the moment, she was really living for the moment.”

The family has said there was always smiles and humour with Alice.

“Alice and I joked a lot, including about death because that was our way,” her mum said.

“We’d been watching a film and she said ‘don’t put me in a stupid party dress when I die’.”

Alice’s last blog, posted a week before she died, talked about her caravan arriving and she said “I’ll try not to pop off”.

Mrs Pyne said: “She would have found it funny that she had written that, she always laughed and had this humour about it.”

Alice had been overwhelmed by her high profile and was gobsmacked to have Sky News on her drive and see Philip Schofield talking about her on This Morning.

Alice received many offers through her bucket list which she declined, including services by stylists and hairdressers to the stars.

Her mum said: “They were all lovely offers but Alice would not take for taking sake.”

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