‘This is our year,’ says nurse after winning £1,000 cash in our competition
- Credit: Charlotte Bond
A former nurse who has beaten leukaemia has spoken of her delight at winning £1,000 in an East Anglian Daily Times and Ipswich Star competition.
Cecilia Fiddy was one of two entrants who won a cash prize after taking part in the contest, where readers were encouraged to collect tokens between Monday, December 30 and Friday, January 17.
Cecilia, from Trimley St Mary, claimed her prize alongside fellow lucky winner Richard Andrews, who is from Sutton.
"We've had a lot of trauma in our lives," the great-grandmother said, explaining she was diagnosed with leukaemia two years ago and has recently gone into remission.
"This time last year I didn't think I was going to make it, but I owe so much to the hospital staff."
After such an agonising year, the news of her win was a real boost for Cecilia. She said: "When we got this money it was like we got a second chance, I said to my husband Frank 'this is it, this is our new life, this is our year'."
The 75-year-old worked for 20 years as an auxiliary nurse at the then Felixstowe General Hospital, before arthritis in her knees halted her in her tracks.
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"It was an amazing job and I loved it so much," she said.
"It was hard in those days, we had no hoists or anything and in a small hospital we had to do everything."
Cecilia and Frank are parents to four children, and have seven grandchildren aged between 31 and eight, plus two great grandchildren.
The couple, who have been married for 57 years, suffered a great loss many years ago when their youngest son Ross took his own life aged just 21.
"I was at the hospital the night it happened and I remember going home and finding him there," she said.
"My job helped me in the end as after six weeks I thought I can go back to work and get on with it or I can't, and I'll have to quit.
"So I went back and it helped me it did, helping others."
As well her son's tragic death, Cecilia's grandson Ethan was diagnosed with a brain tumour when he was seven. Now aged 15, he is confined to a wheelchair.
Whilst the brave teenager is now healthy and happy at school, his illness has taken a toll on the whole family.
Now the couple are putting the money towards insurance to go on a Mediterranean cruise whilst Mr Andrews, aged 67, is putting his winnings in the bank to save for another day.