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Baby joy for Bradford couple who lost daughter
9:00am Monday 18th February 2013 in News
A Bradford police officer and his wife, who were devastated by the death of their two-and-a-half month old baby from a rare illness, have been given new hope with the birth of their second daughter.
Francesca Grace Senior was born last month and her parents, Ryan and Lyndsey, say she is a “blessing” after losing little Isabella Grace a year ago.
The Bradford couple started a fundraising and awareness campaign after the death of Isabella from a severe strain of bronchiolitis, an infection of the lungs caused by a virus.
The campaign raised £50,000, which has been used to buy a specialist ventilator and state of the art cot bed for the paediatric intensive care unit at Leeds General Infirmary, where Isabella was treated for six weeks before her death.
Now they are celebrating the birth of Francesca, who weighed nine pounds and is the picture of health.
Mr Senior, a constable with Bradford South Police, said she had provided a focus for him and his wife.
He said: “We are overwhelmed and overjoyed by her arrival. It has been a difficult 12 months for us and Francesca has given us another reason to get up in the morning.
“Christmas was rather empty, thinking about the previous year when we had Isabella with us, but it was made easier by knowing that Francesca would be coming along.
“After she was born we were on edge for a couple of weeks, after what happened to Isabella. We were very mindful of the cold weather and people coming into contact with her. Of course, we worry a bit more and we are incredibly protective. But there is no reason why the same should happen to Francesca, and she is very well.
“She is alert, developing well and putting on weight and the health visitor is very pleased with her progress. We are thrilled with her.
“Naturally, Francesca has many of Isabella’s characteristics, like her eyes, nose and mop of hair, and that provides us with a little bit of comfort.
“But while we will never forget Isabella, Francesca is an individual in her own right. She has put a smile back on our faces. It is only fair that we focus on her and give her the best start in life.”
Mr Senior, 30, and bank worker Lyndsey, also 30, are continuing to run the Isabella Grace Fund and say her legacy will live on through it.
Friends and family are continuing to set themselves target events to raise funds.
Anyone who wishes to donate can do so through Isabella’s website, isabellagrace.org.