A local family gathered with friends to take part in a run to support research and raise awareness about children who are stillborn. For John Denham and his wife Kristy Putnam, the effects of having a stillborn child is a concept they personally understand all too well.
“Almost a year ago, my wife and I lost our son Quinn, who was stillborn in childbirth. My sister-in-law, Lisa Sherrard, did a half marathon in Australia on May 19 with the goal of raising funds for a stillbirth foundation in Australia. We decided to have a run here to support what she was doing,” said Denham.
The monies raised in Golden and Australia will go to the Stillbirth Foundation Australia.
“It is an excellent organization because it promotes research much like the Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) did back in the day. They promoted a lot of research and found simple things that demonstrated noticeable reduction in SIDS. We hope with stillbirth research we can find simple things that will reduce the number of stillbirth,” he said.
Denham added he hoped that events like this will help people learn about stillbirth.
“This is about awareness about stillbirth because it is one of those topics that does not get talked about a lot. It is like a dark, taboo topic in our lives. It is just good to have that conversation going for other people who may experience it in the future,” he said. “It is also to support my sister-in-law’s run. I am honoured that she did the run for Quinn. I would have run with her if I was in Australia but I thought the least I could do is get together with a bunch of friends and run here.”
Denham was wearing a hat from Australia as a symbolic gesture to Sherrard.
The run went from Spirit Square in Golden to the Blaeberry, where the group was going to have a barbecue.
“Certainly my wife and I have felt the support of the community since we lost Quinn. It has been incredible and doesn’t stop,” he said. “Thank you to the community of Golden. It is a remarkable community and I love the way it sticks by it citizens.”
Denham added a number of the people running in the event will also be running in the Banff Jasper Relay.
The relay goes through two National Parks for a total of 258 kilometres and is a fund raiser for the Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada.
To learn more about stillbirth go to www.stillbirthfoundation.org.au