July 31 2014 Latest news:
West Suffolk reporter
Saturday, June 21, 2014
An inspirational Bury St Edmunds mum who raised thousands of pounds in the last few weeks of her life has lost her battle with cancer.
Amanda Coppins, 44, managed to raise more than £5,000 for West Suffolk Hospital in the weeks following her diagnosis with terminal cancer in May.
She died peacefully on Wednesday morning, having seen a Nautilus machine her fundraising efforts will enable the hospital to purchase earlier in the week.
A minute’s silence in tribute to Ms Coppins will be held at tomorrow’s Race for Life at Nowton Park, where she had been due to speak.
Dave Gooderham, fundraising manager at the hospital, said: “I personally only knew Amanda for a few short weeks, but she was one of the most inspirational and courageous people I had ever met.
“She wanted to create a legacy for her daughter Grace and I know how touched she was by the amazing generosity shown by the local community.
“Her fundraising has meant that we will be able to purchase a new Nautilus machine. On behalf of West Suffolk Hospital Charity, and especially Ward G1, we cannot thank her enough.”
The Nautilus machine will speed up the process of placing a line into cancer patients for chemotherapy treatment.
Ms Coppins was diagnosed with breast cancer in April 2013, but was told the disease had spread to her lungs and liver in May.
Andy Ellis, who worked with Ms Coppins for nine years at Howdens Joinery, said: “She’s a fantastic person and for me, she was inspirational for what she did. She was so selfless, from day one until the end. I’ve got a lot of admiration for that.”
On Tuesday, Grace’s Guildhall Feoffment Primary School raised £1,400 from a fundraising cafe, while West Suffolk Crematorium have also donated £750, taking Ms Coppins beyond her original £5,000 target.
Jane Redman, Suffolk spokeswoman for Cancer Research UK, said: “Amanda was determined to speak on stage at Race for Life in Bury St Edmunds this Sunday afternoon, even though she knew she was ‘living on borrowed time’ and might not make it that far.
“She wanted to use what time she had left to support others in the fight against cancer, and her courage had a profound impact on all those around her.”
A charity music night organised by Amanda - entitled Three Steps to Heaven and featuring local band Opening Salvo - will take place on Friday, July 11, at Moreton Hall Community Centre.
Tickets are available by contacting the hospital’s fundraising team on 01284 712952 or Mr Ellis at Howdens Joinery on 01284 760243.